From the Archives
of the Rare Fruit Council of Australia, inc.
by Andreas Flach
name: Salacca edulis
Northern Queensland, most tropical fruit growers are not aware that the
so-revered Bali salak is not the only salak variety loved and consumed
in Indonesia. The myth that the Bali salak is far superior than other
varieties must be put straight.
At a salak and nangka (jakfruit)
contest in 1990, which was held in Malang, East Java, the salak Suwaru
was proclaimed Indonesia's best fruit, leaving the other salak
varieties far behind.
The popular Sewaru salak has been
developed from trees which were growing in the Pasar Minggu district
near Jakarta. This area has grown salaks for more than a century
without noticeable improvements of the fruit.
Seedlings from the
Pasar Minggu variety were planted in the desa (small village)
Bululawang in East Java. The different climate and soil probably caused
the much-sought-after improvements of the fruit. Further propagation
again led to even better varieties.
After careful selection, one
of these seedlings was planted in the desa Suwaru, near Malang, East
Java, which finally produced the now famous salak Sewaru.
horticultural section of Primary Industries in Malang has since tried
to find more new varieties of the Suwaru salak and some popular
varieties are Dody, Sari and Damang.
The main features are:
variety has the biggest fruit and it weighs from 140-180 grams or 6-7
in a kilogram. Flesh thickness is 7-15 mm, gold-yellowish in colour and
juicy. It consist of three parts, each with a small seed and little
aroma and rather sweet tasting. Colour of the skin is light brown.
Production is low, only 8-14 fruits per bunch, and not many bunches are
produced per season.
variety is the best producer of the three. The fruit size is average
and weighs 70-100 grams. The bunches, normally 3-4 per season, bear up
to 35 fruits each. The flesh is 3-13 mm thick, of a white-yellowish
colour and crisp, and has a strong fragrance. The seeds are very small.
The skin is much darker brown than Dody.
Sari has been used to
develop more varieties of the Suwaru strain of which SII, SIll, SIV and
SX (Code names) look very promising.
characteristics of Damang are quite similar to Sari, though the colour
of the flesh is of a very dark yellow. Between 10-16 fruits go in one
kilogram. The three parts are not so regular in size, with often 2 big
parts and 1 small one. The flesh is 5-12 mm thick and not so crisp as
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