Philippine Durian Finds its Way to Chinese Market

The Philippine durian enters the Chinese market.
The Philippine durian enters the Chinese market. (HONG SON/Pexels)

Despite the previous incidents between the Philippines and China clashing in the South China Sea, the Philippine durian is entering the Chinese market.

Odorous But Delicious Durian

China’s penchant for the odorous but delicious durian has increased in the past years. The fruit means ”thorny” in Malay and belongs to the mallow family. Also dubbed as the “King of the Fruit” in most parts of Southeast Asia, it’s generally favoured for its one-of-a-kind taste, including its health properties.

The fruit is loaded with sugar and healthy fats with considerable vitamin and mineral content. Likewise, it is an exceptional source of energy because it contains high levels of carbohydrates with a good amount of dietary fibre.

Durian is a tropical fruit and can be found throughout  Southeast Asian countries such as Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines. The large fruit has a green or brown outer shell with sharp spikes that are covered in creamy yellow interior flesh.

Singaporean scientists used the husks or spikes to make an odor-free and eco-friendly antibacterial bandage, helping wounds heal faster. The fruit’s signature taste blends sweet and savoury notes that form an almost custard-like consistency.

Preparing the odorous but delicious and nutritious Philippine durian.
Preparing the odorous but delicious and nutritious Philippine durian. (Hans A. Rosbach/WikimediaCommons)

Consumers can eat the fruit fresh or use it to flavour a wide variety of desserts and dishes in Southeast Asian cuisine. While some people find its smell unpleasant, many still enjoy its taste. Because of the lucrative market for durian, Vietnamese farmers even preferred growing them over coffee.

Promising Market for Philippine Durian

With the increased demand in the Chinese market, it looks like the export of Philippine durian will have a bright future. The drive to facilitate tropical fruit exports advances as the Philippines sees a spate in its territorial contention with China over the South China Sea in the previous months.

Dole (Shanghai) Fruits and Vegetables Trading Company is one of the Philippine durian distributors in China. It inked a purchasing deal with the Philippine embassy in China on day two of the China International Import Export that started on Sunday and extends to Friday.

“Philippine durian is delicious, sweet – if it’s not sweet, you get your money back,” said Jaime Florcruz, Philippine Ambassador to China.

However, particulars of the agreement during the expo remain undisclosed, including the volume and value of the export. One thing is for sure, the Philippines will export durian and papaya to China.