ZAMBALES' SWEET  ELENA LISTED  AMONG  WORLD'S  SWEETEST  MANGOES

MANILA, September 3
, 2004  (STAR) By Ramon Ma. Epino - The 1995 World Guinness Book of Record lists Zambales as producer of the sweetest mango in the world. The province’s export quality carabao mango varieties and strains have made a significant contribution to the country’s mango industry.

Among them is the Sweet Elena (Mangifera indica) descended from an 108-year-old mother tree in a five-hectare mango orchard in Sabang, Sta. Cruz, Zambales (Sweet Elena nursery) owned by Penida Moselina Malabed. This mother tree produces 2.4 metric tons of fruit per fruiting season.

The seedlings were evaluated by Ma. Esther Marinas of the Ramon Magsaysay Technological University in San Marcelino, Zambales. The study was conducted in three years in coordination with the Bureau of Plant Industry (BPI).

The National Seed Industry Council (NSIC) of the Department of Agriculture’s Bureau of Plant Industry released the new carabao mango strain of Sweet Elena in October 2002.

Dr. Roberto Coronel, fruit expert from the Institute of Plant Bleeding of the University of the Philippines at Los Banos (IBP-UPLB) and a member of NSIC, considers and recommends Sweet Elena as the best carabao mango strain for commercialization. It has an average fruit weight of 365-700 grams and sugar content of almost 19 percent Brix.

Aside from its size and juicy sweetness it has other superior commercial characteristics. Among them are the absence of fibrous materials in its flesh and thickness of its pulp.

Sweet Elena was adjudged the sweetest and the biggest mango in the Philippines for three consecutive years by the Bureau of Plant Industry.

The nursery in Barangay Bayto, Sta. Cruz Zambales is three kilometers from the national highway.

At the DENR-PAWB-Dizon Botanic Fruit Garden, Ninoy Wildlife Parks, Diliman, Quezon City, Bernie Dizon is topworking some 1,000 Sweet Elena seedlings with other superior strains for pest- and disease-resistant seedlings with superior fruiting quality.

For inquiries, call 0920-924-0285 (Nida Malabed) and 0916-201-3659 or 0921-311-4404 (Bernie Dizon).


Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

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