Kafal fruit in Uttarakhand is very famous and can produce good business opportunities. Kafal paako mi ni chakho is a known story of this fruit. Kaphal fruit is the state Fruit of Uttarakhand.
Kafal fruit in Uttarakhand
In India, it is commonly known as kafal, kaipahl, kafao or kaphal. It is also known as Myrica Esculeta and Myrica Nagi Thunb scientifically. Whereas kafal in English language is known as bayberry.
Kafal fruit is the State Fruit of Uttarakhand. It is the most famous and favourite fruit among Uttarakhand people. It is also popular in other hill areas like Himachal Pradesh, Shimla and Jammu. The kafal tree is found in high-altitude areas. Its fruits are small in size like grains it tastes sour and sweet.
Fruits also cure diseases and kafal is one of them, yes it is an evergreen fruit that is wonderful in taste and is also rich in medicinal properties this fruit really has many advantages.
The fruit available in the markets of Uttarakhand has a good sale. But this year is a year of the curse due to coronavirus which was spread from china to the whole world some have suffered and some are still suffering. Thus China has registered the name in the world’s biggest mistakes ever. Unfortunately, those who do the fruit business have suffered due to corona this year. The fruit sellers say there has been a delay in selling due to the lockdown.
- The binomial name – Myrica Esculenta.
- The common name of kafal – Box myrtle, Bayberry.
- BayBerry is known as kafao in Garhwal and Kumaon.
- It is known as kaaphal in Nepal.
- In hindi – Kaiphal.
- Kafal fruit in English – Bayberry.
- Sanskrit name – krishnagarbha.
kafal fruit tree
As I have mentioned the kafal tree is also known as Myrica Esculenta. It has a height of about 6 to 8 meters or 20 to 26 feet. When we talk about the bark of the tree it is a little bit soft and brittle. Leaves are in a bunch or we can say they are conjoint, 30-60 cm (1-2 feet). Flowers are of two colors Shweta (white), Rakta (red) and both are in bunches. The diameter of the fruit is 1.1-1.3 cm
Kafal fruit is one of the extremely delicious wild fruit throughout the mid-Himalaya region. It is an uncultivated fruit of the Central Himalayas. Kafal trees are found in the hilly regions of northern India and Nepal, especially in the regions of Garhwal and Kumaon of Uttarakhand. It is also found in Himachal Pradesh. The berry fruit is also known as kaaphal in Nepal and it is also very popular among Nepali people. It is well known as bayberry in English and it also grows in Texas and the eastern US. Kafal fruit is mostly found in Uttarakhand’s Kumaon and Garhwal high-altitude regions.
- In Kumaon one can find this fruit in the areas like Ranikhet, Almora, bhowali, and Nainital this fruit is called kaafo in the local kumaoni language.
- When we talk about Garhwal you can find it in the areas like Chamoli, karnpryag, Gopeshwar, and Pauri these areas are renowned for kafal.
How it looks like
Unriped kafal fruit.
The fruit looks somewhat like a mulberry in the early stage and later it looks deep red-colored raspberries. They hardly have any pulp they have a big round seed in the centre. They are very refreshing to eat. Its colour varies from red to green, ripen one is dark red.
Riping season and song
It ripes in April and can only be enjoyed until May.
Some of the hit songs on kafal are:
- Kafal pako chait meri chaila
- Kafal pako mi ni chaakho
The song Kafal Pako mi ni Chaakho is based on a real story that I have mentioned below.
Kafal fruit taste
I still remember when I was in my childhood days we regularly use to go to our village for summer vacations and from my family, I was the one who always prepared with lots of excitement. The village was the place where we enjoyed ourselves a lot I use to go with my friends for climbing a hill where we use to cook food in the open nature. You feel on top of the world when you are surrounded by trees and greenery.
I was just 12 years old when she gave me kafal. Kafal fruit tasted sweet and sour and straight away I was fallen in love with both of them. I can still remember we both were surrounded by green trees, high hills, and beautiful flowers. The two most important things which I love about my village 1. climate and 2. the kafal. I love to eat the fruit mixed with mustard oil and salt which was always made by my Daddy. It is a very easy and delicious recipe and it is still my favourite recipe this recipe is still famous in Uttrakhand, Shimla, and Himachal states. I must tell you that there is a very impactful reason behind mixing mustard oil in kafal.
kafal fruit health benefits
- Kafal contains anti-asthmatic properties.
- Fruits and bark of the tree are together used for making red and yellow dye.
- The oil extracted from flowers and seeds is used as a tonic.
- Leaves can be used as fodder for cattle and branches are used as fuelwood.
- Enough properties of iron and vitamin.
- Cures many types of stomach disorders such as diarrhea, ulcers, gas, constipation, acidity, etc.
- The essence of its stem bark, ginger, and cinnamon mixture is very useful in asthma, diarrhea, fever, typhoid, dysentery, and lung diseases.
- Fruit flower oil is used in-ear pain diarrhea and paralysis.
- A mixture of kafal and Sarson oil (mustard oil) resolves digestion problems, skin problems, anti-cancer, and anti-ageing.
- The bark powder of the tree also relaxes with colds, eye diseases, and sniffing headaches.
One can easily think of this fruit business but the reality is something and imagination is another thing. Even in Uttarakhand where it is a state fruit but circumstances are not very good for the state fruit or we can say it is still a mystery to start a business of this fruit. Government hardly shares any promotional campaign for this essential fruit. Although it is very popular among tourists still it sells at very low prices ranging from Rs100 to Rs150 per kilogram.
You can see the policy of the Government for their state fruit stands nowhere and it is just a formality done by the government. From another point of view If you are seriously thinking about kafal business then it might be a great opportunity for you because of the low competition area.
Difficulties : It is difficult to deliver these fruits from hill areas to the plains like Mumbai or to southern cities like Chennai because it can’t survive in warm weather for a long time and gets spoilt. You can use cold containers to avoid this problem.
Tree bark: You can invest in kafal tree barks. It is very useful in the medicinal field.
Online selling: One can tie up with online companies like India Mart, Flip cart, and Amazon these companies are having a good reputation
Whenever I will get any update about the positive organizations that provide help for the Kafal fruit business I will share it with you.
Kafal taste dishes
- Kafal ka panna
- Paste in saag
Shortcut to Uttarakhand
There are lots of businesses that can be grown in hill areas like Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, and Jammu, etc. All of them are facing the same problem of transportation we have seen what our governments are doing they are cutting hills and making roads which takes a lot of time and don’t also remain permanent we are hearing for 20 years about trains in hill areas but still waiting for that. Transport Minister should rub the eyes and also take a look at the rivers which are gifted by nature and ask himself a question can’t we make these rivers “shortcut of Uttarakhand” and other hill areas.
Generations have been changed but there is hardly any change in hill areas especially in the likes of Uttarakhand and which results in “Mountain Migration” What the Government is lacking they just need a vision and for that, they must open their eyes. If ministers are just sitting in Dehradun Vidhan sabha and travelling from doon to Delhi then how can they make any road map for the areas like Karn-Prayag, Shrinagar which are high on the hill.
The story of Kafal fruit
There is a very soulful story behind this fruit which may bring tears to your eyes.
Down in the village of Uttarakhand, a poor lady who used to reside with her small daughter both of them were the only support for each other.
In summers the bayberry used to ripen and the woman eagerly waits for this period. It immensely turns her happy because she would find it another source of income otherwise she totally has to depend on a small land for their survival. So, she would walk into the jungle and pluck a bucket full of kafal to sell them in the market to decrease the problem of the family that’s why she eagerly waits for summer.
Once at the time of the morning the lady brought a bucket full of kafal to home as she had to go to fetch some food for her animals and thought to sell the fruits in the evening. She summoned her daughter and asked her to keep her eyes on kafal fruits and not to eat them until she returned from the jungle, little girl also promised her mother that she will take care of the fruits and she will not eat them her mother replied and gave a promise to the little girl as well that she will give fruits to her once after she returned from the jungle.
The innocent girl fulfiled her promise given to her mother although the juicy and ripped kafal fruit kept attracting the little girl but she somehow managed to control her temptation for the bay berry fruit but when her mother returned home the bucket of kafal two-third vanished and she was sleeping next to it, seeing this the tired mother instantly went on fire and get red in anger within the flinch of eyesight the angry mother slapped her daughter very hard and she also beaten her sleeping daughter with a bundle of grass she actually punched her back with a bundle of grass which she brought from the jungle and the punch was so hard that the little girl went from sleeping to the state of coma straight away later lady tried to bring the little girl to consciousness by shaking her body but failed the little had died by then.
Seeing her child die like this the mother drowned sobbing the whole day and by the time evening arrived the bay-berries gained their ripped-shaped back again. After a while when the lady realized that due to over lightening of sunrays and its heat the fruit had doomed down and due to the breeze of the evening the fruit bloomed back again to its fresh face. Later, the lady also passed away with immense sorrow and pain.
It is believed that in the month of Chaith (first month in traditional hindu calendar) a bird hymns “Kafal Pako Mai Ni Chakhyo” which means the kafal are ripped but I did not taste them to which another bird replies “Purray Putti Purray Purr” meaning ‘they are complete daughter, they are complete’.
This heart touching tale not only touches the heart but also emphasizes the importance of kafal in Uttarakhand. Even today lots of families are dependent on kafal plucking for their survival.
On a very serious note Government should rethink their state fruit policy and should form a committee so that they can reanalyze their policy and they should discuss whether just registering Kafal fruit in Uttarakhand as a state fruit is enough?
The government needs to set a blueprint for the growth of fruits because lots of people are still dependent on fruits for their other source of income.
Kafal cultivation is required on large scale and to encourage advance cultivation techniques in villages there should be an easy way of transportation.
|1. Kafal is a traditional and state fruit.||1. Just being state fruit is not enough.|
|2. Good online price for Kaiphal Nagi Powder.||2. Lack of promotions.|
|3. Its bark is also useful in the medicinal department.||3. Organizations are not coming in front.|
|4. If used in the right direction it can produce employment.||4. Transportation is the problem.|