Information submited: 2014-08-01 Modified: 2018-04-03 By: 1
Mauritia Flexuosa, known as the Moriche palm, Ité palm, Ita, Buriti, Canangucho (Colombia), or Aguaje (Peru), is a palm tree. It grows in and near swamps and other wet areas in tropical South America. It has been reported from Trinidad, Colombia, Venezuela, Guyana, Suriname, French Guinea, Brazil, Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia.
is an elegant tree which can reach up to 35 meters in height. The large
leaves form a rounded crown. The fruit, which grows from December to June,
is a chestnut colour and is covered with shiny scales. The yellow flesh
covers a hard, oval, nut. The seeds float, and this is the means by
which the palm tree propagates.
Moriche palm fruit is edible, has a high Vitamin C
content, and used to make juice, jam, ice cream, and a fermented
"wine". An oil high in Vitamin A is extracted from the pulp and is
frequently used to treat burns because of its soothing qualities. Buriti oil is an orange-reddish oil extracted from the fruit of the moriche palm. The oil contains high concentrations of oleic acid, tocopherols and carotenoids, especially Beta Carotene.
Buriti fruit oil is considered to be one of the richest sources of beta-carotene, with levels exceeding that of carrot seed oil. Brasilian natives treat the buriti tree as sacred because it contains the nutrients and support needed to sustain life.
The Buriti oil is very rich in oleic acid (72,5%), a type of mono-unsaturated fatty acid that is abundant in Olive oil.
60 female and 80 male buriti palms occur in one hectare. An adult palm
can produce up to 200 kg of fruit, which can be processed into 30 kg of
flour or 5 to 6 liters of finally extracted oil (the flour contains 22%
oil). Assuming an average of 60 buriti palms per hectare, 300 to 360
liters of oil can be extracted per hectare. The reproductive cycle
occurs every two years.