Come summer season and we are all reminded of the intoxicating flavor and taste of juicy mangoes. One of the most famous fruits around the world, Mango or “Mangifera Indica” is often called the king of fruits.
Belonging to the Anacardiaceae family, Mango is believed to be a native of sub-Himalayan plains. This tropical fruit not only has a rich flavor and sweet taste, it also a great source of vitamin B, C and E and probiotics. It is rich in dietary fibers, antioxidants and minerals. Fresh mango is also a good source of potassium. With appropriate amounts of copper, mango also helps in red blood cells generation.
With such an amazing taste and health benefits, it is of no surprise that mangoes are a favorite worldwide. But a sudden twist in this glorious journey has left a bad taste in consumers’ mouth.
Some sellers are using illegal methods to ripen mangoes in India. The world famous Alphonso mangoes are stuck in a controversy due to the greed of few people.
In a huge blow to India’s fruit export, European Union has banned the import of mangoes from India, resulting in not only financial losses, but a spot on India’s quality assurance. Artificially ripened mangoes pose a big health risk for the consumers and thus, many countries are refusing to import Indian mangoes.
Few days ago, the Food Safety wing of Karnataka’s Health and Family welfare department seized samples of mangoes that were ripened using chemicals such as calcium carbide. According to the head of department, fruits are being plucked well before their maturity stage, so that they can be stored for longer periods of time in warehouses. The suppliers then use chemicals to make the fruit look ripened and sell them to the consumers.
Artificial ripening of mangoes has been connected with cancer and many other health problems. It can also disturb the hormonal balance in the body causing serious health issues like diabetes, polycystic ovaries and hypothyroid.
Needless to say, this issue needs to be dealt with utmost urgency. The government, local authorities and general public must take a stand against greedy traders and suppliers to end this mayhem.