Ark of taste
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The babaco, also known as “papaya de altura” or “hijo de sol” is the fruit of a shrub that is widespread in the Andean area including Peru and Ecuador. In Peru this variety is diffuse in certain areas of the Department of Amazonas to the north, whilst in Ecuador it is found in the Loja area to the south.
The babaco plant grows in high-altitudes up to even 3,000 metres above sea level. The ideal conditions for its growth are 14-27 degrees, limited damp and prolonged sunlight. It favours sandy or clay soil and does not tolerate high salt concentrations.
The babaco fruit is pentagonal with smooth surface that when completely mature becomes bright yellow. The pulp is white, with a watery consistency and the taste is similar to pineapple.
The babaco is a traditional variety with great potential compared to other types, but many farmers have abandoned cultivation because of the negative impact of disease and pests. In addition, population increase and the trend towards more profitable farming systems have reduced the terrain dedicated to its cultivation. In Peru, the sale of babaco is very limited because of poor access the region of Amazonas.
Babaco may be consumed fresh or used to make drinks, jams and sweets. In the Province of Luya, Perua, babaco liqueur is made by leaving the pulp and seeds to soak in aguardiente. In Ecuador, babaco is used to make small pastries to be shared during the Corpus Christi festivals.

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Production area:Luya Province

Other info


Fruit, nuts and fruit preserves

Nominated by:Dauro Mattia Zocchi, Maria Fernandez Poquis, Nathaly Arroba