Saturday, May 18, 2013

 8:32 PM      , ,    No comments

Botanical name;  Musa spp.

Local Names - Kesel; Sinhala Vilaippalam; Tamil

Kollikuttu Banana


Recommended varieties and characteristics
  • Embul - Slightly acidic flavor with sweet flavor with appetizing aroma, thin skin, flesh is yellowish white
  • Kolikuttu - Thin skin, early ripening and splitting of peel during ripening is common, sweet flavor with appetizing aroma, flesh is creamy white
  • Anamalu - Very long compare to other varieties, moderate thickness peel, flesh is white
  • Seeni kesel - The sticky flesh is white, rubbery nature, Thin skin
  • Rathambala - Peel colour is red. Less sweet flavor, moderate thickness peel, flesh is white
  • Embon - Very long and wide compare to other varieties, moderate thickness peel, flesh is white
  • Nethrapalam - Recently popular variety, very long and average weight of one banana is vary from 1 – 2 kg
  • Cavendish - Recently popular variety, mainly purchase from supermarkets

Nutritional Value (Per 100 g edible portion)



However, this nutritional information may vary depending on variety, climatic conditions, nutrients available for growth of banana etc. 

Recommended daily intake

Why eat three bananas a day?
British and Italian researchers have found that eating three bananas cuts the risk of a stroke. They said that having one banana for breakfast, one for lunch and one in the evening would provide enough potassium to reduce the chances of suffering a blood clot on the brain by around 21 %. However consumption of more than three bananas per day may also affect negatively your health because banana also contain significant amount of sugar that increase your blood sugar levels. Therefore, diabetic’s patients should eat banana that contain low sugars. 

Medicinal Value/Uses

Ripe fruit is a good source of energy, readily digestible fruit useful in feeding children suffering from diarrhea. Useful for treatment of gastrointestinal disorders such as constipation as well as arthritis and anemia

Fruiting Season in Sri Lanka – Year around available


Storage

Keep the fresh fruits at room temperature (25 – 30 0C), where it can be kept for 3-4 days

Why are they unique? 

Banana strongly associated with Sri Lankan culture. As examples; In New Year table usually decorate with bunch of well ripen banana. As well as when Sri Lankan visits their neibours’ or relations’ home they will take a bunch of banana. Also Sri Lankans serve banana to their visitors when they come to their home. Therefore banana is a symbol of Sri Lankan hospitality. Also banana is a key food that is incorporated to many other traditional events.
“Sri Lankans Cannot Live Without Banana”
Banana is cultivated as large, medium and small scale orchards as well as home gardens. Unripe banana and banana flower are also used for cooking purposes. Currently banana is cultivated in entire Sri Lanka except very high elevation. Almost all the varieties of banana are very sweet and have special texture, flavor and aroma. 
Rathambala Banana

Potential for banana fruit processing industry

Banana fruit processing industry in Sri Lanka is still not properly developed. Currently few exporters engage in banana exportation. However, banana can be used to produce different value added products such as salads, chips and flour. These value added products can be produced by either cottage level or large scale level. In addition to that research and development activities should initiate to identify maturity index for different types of banana, storage methods, environmental and consumer friendly ripening methods, development of value added products with enhanced shelf life and preserve nutritional quality etc.

Reference
      Tropical fruits of Sri Lanka, Department of Agriculture, Sri Lanka
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