In News: The first ever jackfruit collection and processing centre, organised under the aegis of the State government under the Vegetable and Fruit Promotion Council Keralam (VFPCK), has launched sale of jackfruit, ready to eat, under the brand name ‘Thalir.’
- The Kerala government has declared Jackfruit as the official fruit of the state.
- Jackfruit is an exotic fruit grown in tropical regions of the world. It is native to South India.
- It is part of the Moraceae plant family, which also includes fig, mulberry and breadfruit. Jackfruit has a spiky outer skin and is green or yellow in color.
- One unique aspect of jackfruit is its unusually large size. It is the largest tree fruit in the world and can reach up to 80 pounds (35 kg) in weight.
- The largest tree-borne fruit in India, jackfruit is known for its distinct flavour and aroma.
- The fruit is drought tolerant, insect resistant, and highly nutritious, with roots that reach to the moist subsoil.
- As a result, jackfruit is grown organically and naturally, without the use of artificial fertilisers or pesticides.
- A jackfruit tree can produce over 150 fruits per year and can live for over 100 years.
- The leaves are used as cattle feed, and the wood is used to make musical instruments.
- The flesh can be used to make curries, chips, sweets, jelly, and even ice cream.
- Its seeds, when roasted, can be used as an indigestion remedy.
- In comparison to many other species, jackfruit timber plays a significant role in reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
Government Initiative on Jackfruit
- As part of its plans to expand jackfruit production, the government is distributing jackfruit tree saplings to locals to grow in their backyards.
- In the Wayanad district, a research centre has been developed under the Agriculture Department’s supervision to further exploit the fruit’s potential.
- Aside from that, the government hosts a yearly “jackfruit festival” to promote the fruit.