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Feb 9, 2005

Ackees


Ackees the national fruit of Jamaica

 

IN THE VIDEO IS THE GENERAL MANAGER OF The Jamaica Producers Group and Mr.Goudas Spyros Peter Goudas


Ackee is the national fruit of Jamaica and is borne in clusters on an evergreen tree.
Its name is derived from the West African Akye fufo.

The tree was brought from West Africa during the 18th century.

Another name for the plant was Blighia sapida in honour of Captain William Bligh who took samples to Kew in 1793.

Ackee trees are found across the island of Jamaica but the main producing areas are located in Clarendon and St Elizabeth and most recently in St Mary.

There are two main seasons: between January to March and June to August.

 

The fruit turns red on reaching maturity and splits open with continued exposure to the sun.

Traditionally it is at this time that the ackees are harvested and the arilli removed and cleaned in preparation for cooking.

This delicacy is enjoyed by many at breakfast or as an entree.

The canned product is exported to from Jamaica to countries that Jamaicans have immigrated to and continues to be enjoyed by locals and visitors to the island.

In the past, the fruit was considered to be poisonous.

It is now well known however that only if the fruit is eaten before it's ripe will it cause a problem.
The common response is called Jamaica Vomitting Syndrome (JVS).
At the stage when the fruit is unripe, it contains an element called Amino Acid that will cause vomiting.

Interestingly, this is found to affect only consumers who are suffering from chronic cases of malnutrition. and vitamin deficiency.
Nowadays such incidences are rare with the increased awareness of the necessity for consuming only ripe, opened ackees.

Goudas Foods' meticulous quality control with its suppliers ensure that only wholesome ripe Ackees are harvested for packaging.

The quality process selects only the appropriately sun-riped fruits with pods naturally opened.

This allows for the release of all harmful gases followed by the proper cleaning and removal of seeds noted above on the label. Following this process, qualified inspectors will eliminate the soft fruits.

The canning process involves the sterilization of the fruit through the application of appropriate temperature levels as well as the length of time within the retorts.

Care is taken to maintain a high consistency from the beginning of the canning to the end.

There are tendencies for Ackees to be overcooked in the canning process.

This results in the inclusion of soft and messy fruits.
Those would be evident in lower quality brands.

 

 

Goudas Foods ensures the following; clean and firm fruit, and proper sterilization.

The Jamaica Producers Group is one of the largest and most reputable producers of Ackees on the Island operating as cultivators and processors of the product.

Our plantation has more than 18,000 trees, an 80 hectors of land, which makes it the biggest ackee plantation in the world.

They maintain that there are only few brands of consistent quality available to the market;  Goudas, Grace, Jamaica Best, and Montego.

 

 

 

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