Lucrative Mango Season is in the Forecast
- Tuesday, April 05, 2011 11:44 AM
Ahead of mango season (April-September) a conversation on Radio Signal FM, Monday, touted the Haitian Mango as being the best in the world. A guest speaker, specialist in international trade told the talk show host that the difference between mangoes in Haiti and other countries such as the Dominican Republic, Mexico and Florida is their taste and sustainability. The speaker said*:
"In Saint-Domingue and other nations a lot of genetic engineering is used to produce bigger crops and crops through the colder months. But in Haiti, farmers don't have access to those luxuries so you have natural organic mangoes with more taste, more life after picking, and more fibers."
Perhaps on a Haitian radio station this must sound bias, but it is an opinion shared through out most of the Americas.
Best Mangoes in the World?
A produce manager, answering a question on Yahoo! Answers back in 2006 compared mangoes from different nations and had this to say about the mangoes of Haiti:
"A Haitian mango is very flat and elongated, with a skin that starts out lime green and ripens to yellow. It doesn't look pretty, and the flesh is a little more fibrous, but I think it has the best flavor - an intense, tropical taste. It's a great winter treat in January, when the season begins, and it ripens very well at home.
The largest importer of organic foods in the world, Whole Foods posted an article from one of its representatives as she raved about the special Francis mango.
The editors/cooks at the Steamy Kitchen told their readers in May of 2007 "My weekly trip to the organic farm stand. The mango above is one of the best Iâ€™ve ever had. Where is it from? Haiti! Who knew? Organic mangoes from Haiti. I had no idea that there are 10 million mango trees in Haiti." The cook went on to throw down an exotic dish, the Bagna Cauda.
The Haitian Mango Industry took a big hit in July of 2007 , during the administration of United States President George W. Bush. The USDA had claimed that a shipment came in with fruit flies. 50 containers were returned to Haiti, as well as 40,000 others that would have been shipped. Haitian officials insisted that the flies came from the U.S. operators.
None-the-less the former U.S. president, after the earthquake, saw an opportunity to help the Haitian people regain this industry, and with another Former U.S. President, Bill Clinton, became the biggest non-corporate (but not private either) investors in the Haitian Mango Industry.
The effects of the upcoming season are being felt all around. The Crowley Maritime Corporation announced Tuesday that it will be doubling its shipping services two and from Haiti throughout the mango season. Vice President of the corporation, Tony Otero said "though the country still has a long way to go in terms of recovery since the earthquake business is improving. Mango growers are predicting another successful season and shipments from the Dominican Republic are on the rise."
Major beverage maker Coca-Cola announced a $7.5 million project in March of 2010 that would increase the production of mangoes in Haiti. The project is now a fully operating plant for Coca-Cola and its subsidiary Odwalla, as they make sales of new flavors out of Haiti.
The Haitian mangoes will begin shipping out just before Easter, there is a heightened excitement this year as oppose to past years.