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Tanzania passion fruits (Passiflora edulis) or pasheni in Swahili consist of two main varieties, yellow and purple passion. The latter is the hardy of the two. With a yellow skin when ripe, it has a soft, spongy berry-like interior with yellow pulp that sticks to black seeds. Purple passion has similar features apart from the often firm pulp and dark-tinged skin.

Due to the warm climate in the Kilimanjaro region, Tanzania passion fruit can mature in as little as six months after planting. The maximum duration, however, is nine months.  It is also available in the islands of Pemba off Zanzibar. Farmers export their produce to the mainland and Zanzibari markets. Growers in the islands use a combination of traditional and modern cultivation means. For example, they keep beehives for cross-pollination of the trees and utilize canal water for irrigation. Though the crop is still in its development stages, it is likely to reach the same level of mass cultivation as it has done in neighboring Kenya.

The crop was a late introduction to East Africa where it has fast become a major source of income for farmers. Its native place of dispersal was Paraguay and Argentina’s north from here, it spread to other parts of the world which led to diverse varieties.

Eating passion fruit provides the body with 50 percent of the daily needs of vitamin C for protection against illnesses.  Nearly high is dietary fiber: at 40 percent of the daily requirements, this nutrient promotes good digestion. The fruit provides a quarter of the daily value of vitamin A which induces eye health. The mineral composition includes magnesium at 7 percent and calcium at 1 percent of the daily requirements. Both minerals are critical for healthy bone and teeth structure.  The level of potassium, which helps to keep diuresis or removal of toxins from the body through urination, is 9 percent of the daily needs. The level of iron for oxygen transportation in blood is 8 percent of the daily value.

We source our Tanzania passion fruits from family growers with less than two acres of land in Mwanza around the Kilimanjaro region and the coastal islands of the Indian Ocean. Our sources cultivate their fruit trees under very strict terms with little application of chemicals. They only utilize farmyard manure for soil enrichment.

We harvest Tanzania passion fruits when they have attained maturity in six to nine months after planting. We look for a bloated but firm golden exterior for the yellow variety. For its purple counterpart, we check that the berry has rounded to a firm, sizable appearance and it is nearly black. If we want fruits for juice production, we give them a week or two after maturity. The wrinkle-skinned ones are best for raw eating as they are very sweet while the smooth ones are good for processing.

During the harvest, our trained workers use cutting tools to sever the stalk of the fruit a centimeter or two from the button. Our vine-picked selections then go to the packing shed where we clean, sort and pack them.

We pack Tanzania passion fruits in freshly bought, untainted trays. All the selections go into single layers where no piece is on top of the other.  We then keep them in corrugated cartons that have soft paper linings for preservation. We complete the packing process with labeling consisting of the name or cultivar, number of pieces per box, the net weight, country of origin and the destination.

We store the Tanzania passion fruits at the temperature range of between 5 to 10 degrees Celsius. The purple variety keeps for 21 days at the temperature range of 5 to 7 degrees Celsius. The yellow type stores well between 7 and 10 degrees Celsius. We maintain a relative humidity for both 90 to 95 percent. We transport our fresh cargo to the airport in Dar-es-Salaam by our special trucks that have modified environment equipment on board. We normally give one or two days for the shipment to touch down at your destination by air.

Whether you are after the purple or yellow variety, you now have the guarantee of fresh supply of Tanzania passion fruits from us. We take only family growers who have gone through training and acquired Global Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) certificates. While this gives fresh quality to our produce, it also guarantees that when you avail great quantities, all 100 percent have less than 0.01 percent residual levels. We also make sure that our prices are affordable and accessible to every importer. Make an order today!

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