Jackfruit mela a hit in Udupi

Chandra halasu and Rudrakshi varieties from Toobugere in Doddaballapura on display at the jackfruit mela being held at the Raitha Seva Kendra in Doddanagudde horticulture centre on Saturday.

The three-day jackfruit mela organised at the Raitha Seva Kendra in Doddanagudde horticulture centre exposed visitors to a mind-boggling varieties of jackfruits and delicacies made from the fruit.

The venue was crammed with those passionate about the fruit. They tried out samples of the delicacies and also learnt from farmers on how to differentiate jackfruits, or was it possible to grow them in their house. With jackfruit being a profitable venture, the growers were of the opinion that if nurtured and valued, the fruit will offer a better livelihood source for farmers.

As many as three tonnes of jackfruits were carried to the mela by the farmers from Toobugere in Doddaballapur district. The fruit is grown in more than 3,000 trees across the villages in Toobugere. They had also visited the fest a year ago and had received good response, they recollected.

Ravi Kumar, a grower from Toobugere, said that he grows Rudrakshi variety, the most delicious among all jackfruit varieties. Ravi Kumar’s three tonnes of jackfruits were already sold by noon and he had also made a tidy profit.

Ravi Kumar depends on the fruit for income. He added that through the growers’ association, he and other farmers collect jackfruits from more than 70 villages in Toobugere.

The varieties of jackfruits displayed, include, ‘Ekadashi Halasu’ ‘Chandra Halasu’, and ‘Rudrakshi Halasu’ which were in large number.

The delicacies included, ‘Pappad’, ‘Holige’, ‘Kadabu’, ‘Ice cream’, ‘Sheera’, ‘Kebab’, ‘Barfi’, ‘Vada,’ ‘Appam’, ‘Sutav’, ‘Chips’, ‘Manchurian’, among others. Besides, good quality seeds of fruit was also sold. Holige was offered with organic jaggery which augmented the taste and it was indeed mouth-watering. Suhasini Bhat said that she is a regular visitor to the mela.

A variety of dishes

She said she has been using jackfruits and has been making many sweets after learning various methods of using the fruit to make the dishes. It is also a learning experience, besides one can grow the fruit on their land, she added. Jackfruit ice cream was also in large demand and a normal sized scoop was priced at Rs 20. The cream, with the aroma of jackfruit, and garnished with fruit pulps, gave a unique taste.

Earlier, inaugurating the mela, Zilla Panchayat president Dinakar Babu said jackfruit has a special prominence in the Tulu Nadu.

Joint Director of the Horticulture department Nagaraj said grafted saplings of jackfruits are being raised in all the 405 nurseries of the department in the state. The department is keen on introducing a new variety, including Siddu jackfruit to the coastal district. The grafted Siddu jackfruit saplings will arrive from Gubbi in Tumakuru district for developing it in Udupi.

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