The Mystery of mango
The history of mango is, of course, many years old. We find it’s mention in our Vedas. But if you are a 90s kid born in the middle class in India, you are aware of the weird love for mango. Mango season is a festival. No fruit is as popular as mango. We all have that nostalgia associated with it. In super hot summers, families sitting together in front of water coolers and eating mangoes. It is not just a fruit but an emotion.
But what else is so special about mangoes? Where did the rest of the fruits lost marks? Let’s see this objectively:
- The perfect taste: Taste-wise, there is no competition to mango. It is sweet but has a tangy flavor too. No other fruit has such a unique taste.
- Easy to consume: It’s easy to cut and eat. (imagine pineapple and custard apple). It is used in multiple recipes. Pickles, chutneys, shakes, drinks, and now cakes and ice creams too. It is a flexible fruit. Flexibility wins the world.
- Availability: Although it is available in a particular season, there are many types of mangoes found throughout the length and breadth of the country. Every state has its localized variety.
So mangoes are special. We have established that. But what can be the reason for so much love for it? Especially in the 90s generation.
After our country’s independence, we had significant food issues. Drought and famine were raging from north to south. In that era, fruits came to the rescue. Mangoes, especially. It was an indigenous fruit. Easily available. People could eat mangoes for one meal. That’s why we hear stories of people eating a bucket full of mangoes. Also, our country had a mostly agro-based economy. People had their personal mango trees. Families worked together and ate together. Even in the 70s-80s, when people started working in the service sector, they preferred mangoes because of their availability and low cost. For them, the fruit was a synonym for mangoes. It got embedded in our culture.
But as we progressed and our world came closer, many fruits became part of our lives. Therefore, Gen-Z fails to understand what’s so special about mangoes. The excitement behind it. With so many lifestyle diseases and desk jobs, our diet has also changed. Although mangoes are super healthy, rich in vitamins, we can’t consume them at par with our ancestors.
We can say the journey of mangoes represents the journey of our society. Wherewith have we changed as people? How attitudes evolved? What are our priorities? We don’t feel an emotional connection with a fruit anymore simply because we have so many options to eat. Families are getting nuclear. Everyone is so busy with their gadgets that they hardly care what they are putting in their mouth. Forget eating together. We have memories associated with restaurants now rather than family gatherings. We have diet-conscious wokes, who cannot eat food that can be uttered easily. The world and its ways have changed. In the era, when AI is on the verge of 3D printing the food, where does a poor mango stands a chance? It is losing its grip.
Having said all that, mango is still the king of fruits. It has still lots of capabilities to fight back. So what are you waiting for? Go and eat a mango. It tastes like heaven. The best fruit ever!