...that's how some of our indian mangoes have been feeling of late. When it comes to climate change, the majority of conversations still use words like 'when' - when it happens, when the temperature rises, when the seas rise etc. Of course the reality is that our climate is already changing, and more so in some regions than others at this point in time. The Western Gatts of India is one of those regions, and that is where some of our delicious alphonso mangoes come from.
When our indian farmers started talking to us about the problems, we decided it was important to make sure we did our bit to help cool the mangoes down, and keep the farmers in the mango business. Fast forward through many many conversations, and we had a set of recommendations from a local agricultural institute, a consultant and 18 farmers working with our supplier, ready to trial some new techniques in the world of mango growing.
We have just received the first report from the project, and despite only being able to implement 2 of the 5 techniques this season we have seen some great results. Farmers participating in the trial were able to use less agrochemicals on the trees and still managed to have a lower incidence of pest and disease attack than a standard farm (saving them lots of money as well as protecting the environment). Plus, the trial farms also found that they had a higher yield of mangoes per tree.
Next season we will be implementing all 5 of the recommendations, and we are keeping our fingers crossed that we get even better results. Needless to say the farmers participating in the project are pretty happy that they can still produce great mango in a changing climate (and save some cash at the same time), and we are thrilled that we still get great tasting mango and have managed to help out in tackling this challenge.
A big thanks to our suppliers, and everyone involved in the project so far. I'm off to grab a mango passionfruit smoothie to celebrate.