In an age when an increasing number of people think that there is nothing yet to be discovered, Nature is determined to contradict them. In the forests of Virginia, on the banks of the Potomac River, Nature is keeping one of its most treasured gifts: the pawpaw. As strange and exotic as this name might be, this mango-like fruit was discovered long ago in the times of Thomas Jefferson, only to be forgotten and then rediscovered. In fact, story has it that pawpaw seeds were sent to Jefferson’s friends in France while he was a minister there.
Despite the fact that throughout history, people have named towns and even lakes after the mysterious fruit, few have had the opportunity to actually taste it. You wonder why? Just because the pawpaw is not available in supermarkets like any other fruits. Got an appetite for a mouth-watering yellow pawpaw? You need to get deep into the woods. For now, this ”exotic fruit” can only be eaten from the tree, in its purest form or can be found in some farmer markets across the region.
Despite of its eary name, this fruit has little secrets for Neal Peterson a plant scientist who has studied it for more than 35 years. Studied and improved that is, because Neal has created different breeds of pawpaw with less seeds and more flesh. The pawpaw fruit is no less tasty or nutritious than the common banana, apple, cherry or plum. It is just that it is much less known to the public. Recent studies have revealed that the pawpaw fruit is actually very high in antioxidants which can help us find a number of diseases including cardiac arrests.
Could it be that a mysterious fruit growing in the deep forests of Virginia hold the key to “never-ending youth”. Will we be able to soon transform the saying of “An apple a day keeps the doctor away” into “ A pawpaw can brighten your day”? For sure time will tell.