The subtropical sweet from Axarquía
Mangos origanilly come from Southeast Asia and their plantation has successfully spread in the region of Axarquía since they were introduced as a fruit in the 1980s. In fact, one of the biggest concentration of this product in out country is located there, with almost 4.000 hectares. This number is only surpassed by the Tropical Coast of Granda. Every year, the production go from 10.000 to 30.000 tons of mangos. The output of mango production is, indeed, bigger than avocados, another fruit that is highly consumed in Málaga.
In an hectare, there can be up a thousand mango trees. Although there are a lot of mango varieties, five of them are cultivated in Axarquía: Osteen, Tohmmy Atkins, Sensation, Kent and Keith. The first one, Osteen, is the most common one, since 80% of the plantation are of this variety. The Tohmmmy Atkings varieties is the earliest one to be collected since it harvest starts in August. Deppending on the variety, mangos from Málaga can have yellow, green or even red skin. Their flesh is bright yellow, almost orange. Near the seed, the texture of the mango turns more fibrous. Their taste is soft and very sweet and full of aromatic tones. Mangos from Málaga are getting more and more popular in Spain and abroad. In fact, the majority of their production is exported to European countries, such as France, Germany and United Kingdom.
Mangos, like other subtropical fruits, is very versitle for cooking. It can be enjoyed as a dessert on its own but it is also used to make handmade desserts, such as smoothies or juices. It is getting more and more usual to use it as an ingredient for salads to give them an exotic touch. Some companies in Málaga are distributing mangos in jams or liqueuers.
Axarquía is the region in Málaga where more mangos are grown, with more than 4.000 hectares spread near the coastline. There are important fields used for the plantation of mangos near the valley of the Vélez river, with climate conditions that are similar to the ones needed to grow avocados. Some of them are located near the villages of Benamocarra, Benamargosa or Vélez-Málaga. Besides these, mangos are also grown in eastern villages such as Nerja, Frigiliana or Torrox.
Mangos originally come from India and other Southeast Asia countries. Known in Europe as the ‘peach from the Tropic’, this fruit has been grown for over four thousand years. It arrived to the Canary Islands in the 1970s and it later came to Axarquía and Tropical Coast of Granada, where it has been becoming the most cultivated fruit, thanks to the favourable climate in this area of Eastern Andalucía.
Mangos are very benefitial for our health. Its fibre content prevents and fights constipation. It also reduces cholesterol levels in blood or even obesity. Due to its content in vitamin C and antioxidant properties, it helps relieve degenerative illnesses. Mangos, therefore, are used to strenghten the immune system and it has diuretic effects.