Delicious mango variety hits 30th year milestone
ONE of Queensland's most delicious and valuable exports has celebrated its 30th birthday.
The R2E2 mango, a cross breed between Bowen and Kent mango varieties, was originally developed as a processing mango in 1982 before its export potential was realised.
The fruit is now exported to more than 30 countries worldwide and accounts for 70 per cent of Queensland's $70 million mango industry.
Mareeba mango farmer John Gambino, who has been growing R2E2 mangoes at his Gilmore Rd farm for 15 years and has 4000 trees, said the juicy fruit was ideal for export.
"Asian markets love a big fruit with a red blush and that's what the R2E2 is," he said.
"It's also durable, with a long shelf-life and it travels well.
"We have a fair crop this year but that's because we work hard on it.
"They are a hard crop to grow and can make for costly management depending on weather conditions."
Also known as the "Star Wars" mango, the R2E2 takes its name from the row and position in the field of the original tree at Bowen.
About 7000ha of mangoes are grown in Queensland, most in the Mareeba, Burdekin and Bundaberg regions.
- Unripe mangoes should never be refrigerated
- Mangoes need to breathe, do not store them in plastic bags
- Mangoes freeze well and can later be pureed
NEW CAIRNS.COM.AU COMMENT POLICY
We welcome your comments on this story. Comments are submitted for possible publication on the condition that they may be edited. Comments submitted without a full name and suburb/location will not be considered for publication. Please read our full comment policy and publication guidelines.
Share this article
Taste sensation: Nipon Suksiam can't conceal his joy at the prospect of a juicy R2E2, celebrating 30 years as a prime Queensland export. Picture: MIKE WATT