New year, new fruits to reap!
With the abundance of crops in the Philippines all year round, keeping track of which ones are already in season can be difficult.
Fret not! We’ve listed a few crops that are in season during the first quarter of the year to keep you posted.
Dalanghita (Citrus nobilis)
Dalanghita is a local citrus fruit that is akin to dalandan in terms of appearance. This round, green citrus fruit is high in vitamin C.
Based on the data from the Bureau of Agricultural Research (BAR), dalanghita belongs to the yellow group of fruits that are high in beta carotene and flavonoids, which help prevent heart diseases and cancer.
Harness the benefits and enjoy the refreshing flavor of dalanghita by simply squeezing their juice and serving it with ice.
Banana (Musa sp.)
In a tropical country like the Philippines, there are many fruits that locals can savor all year long. One of these is the banana. Different varieties of this fruit are always available in the market.
Bananas are a staple item of Filipino households because, aside from their high potassium content, they can be prepared in several ways.
Aside from being eaten fresh, this nation’s favorite merienda is usually cooked into meals like banana cue (caramelized banana), maruya (banana fritters), and turon (banana wrapped in lumpia wrapper).
Coconut (Cocos nucifera)
Like bananas, coconuts are prolific all year, although the number of fruits may change depending on the season.
Different parts of coconuts have certain functions—from being a versatile ingredient in local recipes like buko salad to being a growing medium or mulch for plants.
Coconut fruits are harvested in different stages of their maturity depending on the purpose.
As mentioned in the code of Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) for coconut by the Bureau of Agriculture and Fisheries Standards (BAFS), the fruits of this tree should be harvested nine months or less after flowering for young coconuts, 10 months for bukayo production, nine to 11 months for macapuno, and 11 to 12 months for their oil, milk, desiccated coconut processing, as well as seed usage.
Papaya (Carica papaya)
Papaya, also referred to as pawpaw, is also a good source of vitamin C. Its pear-shaped fruits have a yellow or orange-colored juicy pulp with small, dark seeds. This tropical fruit is usually eaten uncooked or made into jams, juices, among other things.
The Philippines, according to BAFS, has seven commercial varieties of papaya for human consumption, namely Cavite Special, Morado, Solo, Sinta, Cariñosa, Red Lady, and Red Royale. These are typically sold whole, in fresh slices, or supplied to manufacturers for further processing.
May these in-season fruits and vegetables help you kick off the year with a healthy mind and body!