Badea (Passiflora quadrangularis) is a fruit of the passion flower family that has always been grown in the Chocó region and particularly in the area of Quibdó. It has always been part of local food customs. It is a climbing plant with a flexible trunk, which adapts well to a range of soils.
The fruit is the size of a melon and varies depending on the soil. The outer color may vary in color from green to yellow. The flesh is extremely juicy and the center of the fruit contains seeds covered by a very sweet and pleasant-tasting pulp. The average-sized flowers are brightly colored and are also edible. The outer flesh is used to make cold drinks, sorbets, jam and various confectionery products. The seeds are used to prepare juice or are eaten as they are, as they have a very pleasant taste and smell.
This climbing plant was identified by the Spanish in the 16th century and was highly prized for its organoleptic properties. In Latin America, badea is also found in Ecuador and Venezuela, though it is in Colombia, particularly in the Quibdó region, that the product is particularly closely linked with local culture.
Badea is also found for sale in markets in other regions. However, it is not easy to determine how much is grown, as it is grown exclusively in household gardens. There aren’t any cooperatives or associations of producers to protect its cultivation and promote sales. The fruit is readily available at Quibdó market, though only in small quantities and at high prices. in addition to use for home consumption, some badea is sold locally.
One of the reasons why badea is facing extinction is the fact that new generations aren’t used to eating it every day. Their parents and grandparents find this sad, as they realize that young people eat badea less because they see it as an old and outdated product that is linked to folk traditions and their humble origins.