Durian (Duriozibethinus) is a Southeast Asian tropical fruit that is known for itsdistinct and unique odor, sulfury aroma and appetizing taste thus making it the”King of Tropical Fruits”.
This fruit can grow as large as twelve inches longand six inches in diameter and typically weighs up to two to seven pounds.Depending on the species, it can be round or oval, its husk is green to brownand its flesh is pale yellow to red. Many locales compare this fruit to aperfume with a very strong smell, while the foreigners coined the saying”smells like hell and tastes like heaven.” After all the smell is not thatappealing for everyone but rather irritating to some who are not used to it,describing it as “turpentine and onions garnished with gym sock, but upontasting the insides of durian you’ll surely regret the feeling of disgust uponsmelling the outer side.
The famed naturalist Alfred Russel once remarked ondurian: “the more you eat of it, the less you feel inclined to stop” and it isindeed true for the fact that many individuals really enjoy eating durian andchooses it as their favorite fruit. It represents the third plant genus in theMalvales order and first in the Helicteroideae subfamily. According to Dr. Joseph Mercola, “Durian isextensively growing in tropical regions, like Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia,and the Philippines as major producers. The tree also grows in northernAustralia, some South American countries, and Africa.” This fruit is not onlyan edible fruit, it is also used as a natural supplement in health diets. Like the othertropical fruits such as watermelon, banana and jackfruit, durian is rich inenergy, vitamins and minerals offering us water, protein, phytonutrients andbeneficial fats, while very low in cholesterol and sodium.
A balanced intake ofdurian is said to positively improve digestion, cardiovascular health,insomnia, sexual dysfunction, and anemia. Durian, a great source of magnesium,potassium, manganese, and copper, is very helpful in enhancing bone health;also, its antioxidant properties is a good way to regulate aging. A studyconducted as described in a European Journal of Integrative Medicine done in2011 in rats concluded that at different stages of ripening, a durian canconstitute a level of excellence as a source of effective natural compoundswith antioxidants and health-protective activity in general, as a proofpolyphenols and flavonoids were found with significantly higher percentage inoverripe varieties. While most of the said health benefits mostly relies mostlyin its flesh as a source, studies also see the ability of its shell to containhealing properties when processed into an extract. As described by A Journal ofSouthern Medical University in 2010, durian shell extract could serve as anexcellent source of natural alternative to drugs like acetaminophen andpenicillin.
Abouttwo thousand years ago, nearly two million metric tons of fuel wood andcharcoal are consumed daily in the developing countries, about one kilogrameach day for every man, woman, and child. Some of the woods are converted intocharcoal but most is burned directly. Although the energy obtained representsonly about 10% of the energy consumed worldwide, nearly half of the world’speople absolutely depend on it to cook their food, heat their homes and water,and produce marketable goods.
Fuel wood and charcoal derived from wood, alongwith animal dung and agricultural residues provide over half of the totalenergy consumed in some sixty to seventy developing nations. This fuel suppliesas much as 95% of the domestic energy in these countries, as well as making asignificant contribution to commercial and industrial needs. Davao city isknown for its agricultural resources particularly durian.
The demand of durianamong locals and tourist is such that the city is left with trucks of durianwastes. One remedy to this problem is the establishment of a community-basedproject involving charcoal production out of durian wastes. Charcoal productionis not only a timely practical project for people living in Davao, but it isalso a push for environment.Most of us know that the Philippines is one of theunderprivileged countries in this world.
But most of Filipinos use expensivetechnology like gas stove and electric stove for cooking. And most of us knowthat using technology have disadvantages to our lives. “Exposure in gas canlead to intolerance and adverse reactions both to it and other substances inour environment.” (Malouf and Wimberly, 2011).To lessen these cases, the researchers, are alsointerested in a certain property of the durian’s shell, though it’s a littlebit of a simpler one – it’s capability of being an alternative source ofcharcoal.
In the Philippines, a country with a still developing economy, usingcharcoal for cooking is something that is not new to everyone, it still quitean active industry despite the blossoming of the Petrol gas technology.