I. INTRODUCTION:Avocado belongs to the family Lauraceae which originated in Gondnana (Africa); it was introduced during 1890 by the Spaniards through seeds that comes from Mexico. But it was successfully introduced on 1902 to 1907 by Americans. With the help of Bureau of Plant Industry, planting materials were received from Hawaii, Costa Rica and United States. During 1913, the country wide spreading of avocado tress started.
They are known as ‘aquacate’ in Spanish and ‘alligator pear’, ‘palta pear’, ‘midshipman’s butter’ and avocado in English which is ‘abokado’ in vernacular (www.fao.com). Avocados are divided into three sub species or races namely: Mexican (sub-tropical), Guatemalan (semi-tropical) and West Indian (tropical).
Many varieties have been introduced since 1903, some of them are: Bacon, Booth, two strains of Fuerte from South Africa and the United States, Hardy, Hass, Maypan, Linda, Lyon, Lula, Nabal, Puebla, Simmonds, Tonnaye, and Zutano ( Griesbach, 1985 and 2005). There are two distinct types of the said Avocado that exists; one is the green-fruited and purple fruited type. But in line with the Philippines, the aforementioned varieties are not present because some of them have been lost. The only varieties found were Cardinal, Calma, Uno, 247 and 227. Recently there were three new varieties approved by National Seed Industry Council namely: Parker, RCF Purple and Cepillo Green (www.fao.
com). While according to Galindo, Torres and Fernandez (2007), Avocado is now the fourth important tropical fruit in the world. According to Food and Agriculture Organization, avocado is one of the suitable fruits to the Philippine soil and its climatic conditions. In accordance with crop statistics, compiled by the Bureau of Agricultural Statistics, of the Department of Agriculture, that in 1990-1997, the total area of 4, 753 hectares planted with avocado in the Philippines. The estimated annual production was estimated about at 45.884 tons.
The following producing regions of the country are Cagayan Valley, Central Visayas and Southern Tagalog Followed with the leading producing provinces: Bohol in Central Visayas, Isabela, Nueva Vizcaya, Quirino and Cagayan located in Cagayan Valley and Southern Luzon. From the Bureau of Agricultural Statistics, Department of Agriculture (1998), Cagayan Valley appears to be the highest in number of bearing tress and production yield by Region. The pulp of the avocado has been reported to have beneficial cardiovascular health benefits (Dabas, et al, 2013). Also source of vitamin E and prevents aging and heart disease. It also has more carotene, protects against cataracts and eye diseases and destroys pre-cancerous and cancerous cells. Avocado also helps lower cholesterol (Marilyn, 2011). In addition according to the NHANES analysis, the average consumption is one-half of an avocado which provides a nutrient and phytochemical dense food consisting: dietary fiber, total sugar, potassium, sodium, magnesium, vitamin A, C, Z and K, folate, vitamin B-6, niacin, pantothenic acid, riboflavin, choline, lutein, phytosterols and high-monounsaturated fatty acids. While its oil consist of 71% monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA), 13% polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) and saturated fatty acids 16%.
That helps to promote healthy blood lipid profiles and enhance the bioavailability of fat soluble vitamin and phytochemicals (Duarte et al, 2016). The seed represents an under-utilized resource and a waste issue for avocado processors (Dabas et al, 2013) and this made a major interest of the researchers to cultivate its seed instead of dumping into waste. And one more thing though the said avocados are well known as health promoters for they are packed with vitamins and antioxidants, according to Engels (2016) the seed is actually where most of the fruit’s nutritional potential resides because it holds up 70 percent of avocado antioxidants, including polyphenols that is associated with green tea. And it also contains more soluble fiber and has antioxidants that help regulate intestinal function and have even been shown to prevent tumor growth. Current research has shown that avocado seeds may improve hypercholesterolemia and a useful treatment of hypertension, inflammatory conditions and diabetes.
It even possesses insecticidal, fungicidal and anti-microbial activities (Dabas et al, 2013). As stated by Henry (2015), the seed contains a diverse number of nutrients and phytochemical compounds of nutritional value. In which she concluded after conducting a test prior to avocado seed, the nutrients and phytochemicals found in the soft edible part are also found in the seed part through varying concentrations. Despite from the fact that avocado seed is edible, it cannot be denied that it has an unpleasant taste because of the tannins, which not one particular compound, but rather a whole class of biomolecules present. Prior to this, one of the method that the researchers is going to induce regarding with the problem in line with product development of the avocado seed is turning it into smoothie with the aid of certain processes from eliminating its bitter taste. References: Abubakar, et al., (2016).
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