The Growth and Uses of Mango Fruits

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Mangifera indica or known as mango is a member from Anacardiaceae family where it has been cultivated for over 4000 years. The mango is considered native to southern Asia, especially Myanmar and India. Back in 1948, the name ‘mango’ by which known in English and Spanish speaking countries is most likely originated from the Malayam ‘manna’, which the Portuguese called as ‘manga’ when they came to Kerala for the spice trade ( Encyclopaedia Britannica).

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The mango tree is erect about 10-40m in height, evergreen with symmetrical and fast-growing with suitable environment plus it is a long-lived orchard. The canopy of the mango tree is broad and have round branch. The leaves are dark green at above and pale green on another side, while red when young. The flowers are small, whitish-red or yellowish-green and have a fragrant odour in which it borne in large terminal panicles. Besides that, the mango flower is monoecious where both stamen and pistil could be found in the inflorescence. The fruits appear at the end of a stringlike stem (the former panicle) with two or more fruits. It varies greatly in size and character, usually, its form is oval, kidney-shaped or long and slender. The flesh of the mango is peachlike and juicy. According to Tharanathan et. al (2006), mango fruit varies in size, shape, colour, flavour, taste and fibre content between variety and species.

Mango tree has spread to other tropical and sub-tropical countries throughout the time. It is one of the world’s most valuable fruits and the world’s largest producer in mango production in India (Adhikary et al., 2013). Meanwhile, the main area for mango cultivation in Malaysia is placed at northern areas such as Perlis, Kedah and Perak. Mango has high nutritional status and a good source of fibre and vitamins. However, the composition in the mango fruit basically varies with their cultivar. Lauricella et al(2017) reported that mango pulp exhibits an important source of potassium, fibre and vitamins while it has a relatively high content in calories (60 Kcal/100g fresh weight) via chemical analysis process. The world production of mangoes is evaluated to be over 23.4 x 106 MT per anum and India leads the first ranks of world’s mango producing countries where over 50% of the total mangoes produced throughout the world(Tharanathan et. al, 2006).

Besides being consumed as fresh fruit, mango also being exploited for other purposes such as pickles, chutney or mango sauce, jam and ready-to-serve beverages. For the past 4000 years, the mango was commonly used as herb in ayurvedic medicine. Various part of mango plant is used to treat different kind of health problems such as hypertension, rheumatism, haemorrhage, bronchitis, insomnia, diarrhoea, toothache, asthma and anaemia. Mango juice is restorative tonic and used in heatstroke while the seeds are used in asthma and as an astringent (Shah et al.,2010)

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