Succulent, Sour and Sweet: A History of Pineapple

Pineapples are one of the most delicious fruits. The sour and sweet taste of pineapple is savoured all over the world. The history of pineapple is very interesting. Modern research says that pineapples were first grown in South America. When explorer Christopher Columbus discovered it in Brazil in 1493, pineapple was a popular fruit, and local tribes cultivated it in large numbers.

Pineapples are easy to grow in tropical climates. It is said that Columbus first brought this fruit to Spain and presented it in the royal court. During that time pineapple became a regular breakfast fruit of royal families. Pineapple reached India through Portuguese merchants around 1550.

By the end of the 16th century, cultivation of this fruit had spread to most tropical regions of the world, including some islands in the South Pacific. Today the major producers of pineapples include the countries of Costa Rica, Brazil, China, India, and Thailand. In the 17th century, the pineapple was considered a luxury fruit in some countries. Later its cultivation improved and its yield continued to increase over time.

Interestingly, several questions have been raised on the western theory regarding the origin of pineapple. It is said that before Pineapple was grown in Brazil, the fruit was being grown and eaten in India. Indian author KC Srivastava in his book ‘Ancient India: History and Culture’, writes that pineapple was grown and consumed during the Maurya period (322 to 185 BC) and the Gupta Empire (320 to 550 AD). According to Srivastava, Mongolian migrants brought pineapple to India by sea. Whatever the origins of pineapple, everyone agrees that this fruit which is rich in Vitamin C is a delight to eat.