A dome shaped evergreen which grows up to 16m in height. The leaves are dark green and leathery, new leaves are red. Select mangoes according to their stage of maturity in relation to turnover rates expected in your store. The fruit itself should be free of bruises and of an even size. A peach coloration on the skin is not an indication of ripeness. Fruit grown on the outer branches of the tree, in direct sunlight, will have more colour than those grown on inner, shaded branches. When ripe, mangoes will yield to gentle pressure at the stem end and will have a distinctive mango aroma.
If picked at the mature-green stage, the fruit is usually ripe within 7 - 14 days. Mangoes can be control ripened or allowed to ripen at room temperature.
Select mangoes that yield to gentle pressure and emit a distinctive aroma if you want ripe fruit. Avoid those showing signs of bruising.
Mangoes can be eaten simply diced or sliced. They can be served on fruit and cheese platters as well as incorporated into a range of salads. Mango sorbets, ice cream, parfait or mousse can be served as a refreshing summer treat.
The mango grows well in tropical and subtropical regions, but will not tolerate areas where rainfall is continuous. The tree prefers moderate moisture and appears to do well in regions where there is a definite dry season.
The mango is quite drought tolerant and can also withstand heavy rainfall. Trees tend to remain vegetative in tropical regions with a regular rainfall, and flower and fruit in a dry season. Usually 4-5 months elapses between flowering and fruiting. A tree under favorable conditions can grow quickly and reach a height of 16 metres.
The mango belongs to the same family as the Jamaican plum and the cashew nut. The fruit has been cultivated for more than 4000 years in many warm countries around the world and is believed to be native to the East Indies and Malaysia. Evidence suggests that the fruit also grew wild in Ceylon and regions at the base of the Himalayas.
By early twentieth century the fruit was considered very popular and has been described by ancient travelers as the world’s most delicious fruit.
The Kensington Pride is Queensland’s major fresh market variety. The variety was named after the property on which it was first commercially grown, although it is better known today as the Bowen Special.
Mangoes are an excellent source of vitamins A and C, a good source of dietary fibre and a useful source of vitamins B1, B6, potassium and pantothenic acid. 180kJ/100g. 15°C and 85 - 95% relative humidity.
Ripening can be triggered by surrounding the fruit with ethylene gas. The rate it ripens is then controlled by temperature - the higher the temperature the faster it ripens. This method is commonly used to control ripen avocados, bananas, kiwifruit, papaws and tomatoes. Ripening fruit produce ethylene naturally.
Twenty-four hours surrounded by ethylene is enough to trigger the ripening process. It should be noted that ethylene would not ripen immature mangoes. The flesh will soften but skin colour and flavour will not develop normally.
Both temperature and humidity should be controlled. The best temperature to ripen mangoes is between 18°C and 22°C. Below 1 8°C ripening is slow and flavour development poor. Above 22°C, flesh softens as the fruit ripen but skin does not colour normally. These motley green and yellow fruit do not sell well. Rots also develop more readily at these higher temperatures.
Humidity should not be allowed to fall below 85%. Once subjected to these controlled ripening conditions, the mangoes will ripen in 5 - 9 days. Depending upon fruit maturity, the flesh will start to soften and skin to colour after 1 - 3 days. The fruit then takes another 4 - 6 days to reach eating-ripeness and develop a full yellow skin colour.
Once mangoes are ripe enough to sell, lowering their temperature can slow further ripening. They can be stored at 10 - 1 3°C for up to one week. Eating ripe mangoes can be held as low as 5°C for three to four days.
Ripen at room temperature. The mango has a relatively short shelf life and should be eaten as soon as possible or otherwise kept well wrapped in the refrigerator.