Alphonso Mango The Origin Story
You will be surprised to know that India's beloved Hapus was brought to us by the Portuguese around the 1500s. The Portuguese ruled over many other lands, and they sold a lot of goods between these countries. So their ships sailed from country to country with a variety of new products. Fruits were one of those.
It was a Portuguese ship returning from Brazil to the port of Goa that brought a common Brazilian variant of mango. The botanical name of mango is Mangifera Indica, where India represents Indica. Therefore, Portuguese farmers saw this as an excellent opportunity and attached shoots to these Brazilian mango trees to Indian mango trees.
Portuguese farmers planted these fields in their gardens in Goa, and the trees survived. Some years later, they bore fruit, and the Portuguese realized that they had created a work of art.
Enthusiastically they planted the seeds of these fruits. Some years later, they realized that the trees growing in these seeds possessed mangoes of random species.
Thus was born the divine fruit, which was the greatest in the world and so unique that it could only grow by grafting.
One Hapus, many variants!
Alphonso then traveled to many other places from Goa. The fruit displayed phenotype plasticity. The taste, color, aroma, and other characteristics of Alphonso Mango changed as in the area in which it was grown. The best was found on the Konkan coast, which has a low moisture content.
However, the phenotypic plasticity in Alphonso Mango produced many species of mangoes, which looked like Alphonso Mango but lacked the essential qualities found in the ancient Alphonso Mango.
How to identify authentic Alphonso?
- Aroma: The original Alphonso Mango grows in Devgad Taluka in Sindhudurg District of Maharashtra. The pure and real-life Alphonso Mango from Berggad offers a natural scent. Even one mango stored in a room will fill the room with the aroma. Mangoes grown in some areas look like Alphonso Mango but have no odor or give off an awful smell when you press it hard on your nose. Chemically ripe mangoes do not give off such a scent.
- Look: Mangoes should 'look soft' and touch soft when ripe naturally. Chemically ripe mangoes are yellow, yet hard.
- Color: Chemically ripe mangoes look different colors. Chemically ripe mangoes look different colors. The naturally mature mango shows hues of yellow and greens.
- Wrinkles and insides: Mango should not have lines or wrinkles. Many people feel that if mangoes show wrinkles, they are beautiful. If you see green on the inside of mango after slicing, it implies that it is harvested before ripening.