December 2nd, 2009 | melody | Comments Off on Day Three – Magnificent Mangoes!
Wednesday morning, (day three) near a smoky town called Quevedo, where the natives use slash and burn agronomy; three brothers have a vision of another kind of agriculture. Four years ago they took a nearly abandoned farm, surrounded by luscious wet rice fields, and converted it to organic mango production. The brothers planted 40 hectares with Kent, Tommy Atkins, and Ataulfo varieties so that production would occur from early November to January. Harvested by hand, the mangoes are sized and drained of their latex upside down in the fields. I learned that the shoulders must gently curve upwards and a seductive indentation they call “belly button” must form before the mangoes are ready for harvest. Did you know mangoes are the #1 consumed fruit on the planet? As I bite into a ripe, warm mango with its sweet peppery taste and the juicy pulp slowly dripping from my chin, I am reminded as to why this is so.