By P. Vijian|
CHENNAI, Sept 16 (Bernama) -- The thorny durian, prescribed as an antidote for infertility, may sound wacky.
However, in south India, barren women are queuing to taste these rare fruits, believing it helps women to conceive.
Durian farm owners are busy taking orders, local fruit vendors
happily stick posters describing the fruit's potency and the media is
abuzz over the thorny fruit.
The 'miracle' of the durian appears to be a new fad gripping Tamil Nadu.
"It (durian) is becoming famous among childless couples although
it has not been scientifically proven to help improve fertility.
"There has been considerable demand for the fruit and many are
placing prior orders from our farms," B. Ramakrishnan, assistant
director of Tamil Nadu State Horticultural Department told Bernama
The state-owned two farms in Kallar and Barliyar, in Nilgiris
district of Tamil Nadu, produce about 4,000 durians each season, the
only places in India where these fruits are widely grown.
Prices of durians have also skyrocketed in recent months, jumping
from Rs300 (RM22) per kg to Rs1,000 (RM74), and demand is soaring
despite the high prices, said Ramakrishnan.
"For the past 22 years, I have been selling durians and more
childless people are buying them. I sell about 100 fruits a week. In
fact, prices have gone up now because there is a shortage.
"Women here believe it has some medicinal ingredients that can
cure medical deficiencies," added David Amalraj, 54, a fruit vendor
from Ooty, a popular southern hill station.
Fruit vendors are promoting durians, claiming they possess
medicinal values which help enhance a woman's estrogen hormone
production, much needed for a female to conceive.
But doctors in south India are rubbishing such claims, arguing that durians have nothing to do with fertility.
"This is not true, it's pseudo-science, people give some
scientific explanation to make others believe. It has nothing do with
"But here (India), people believe in a lot of things, so some
women believe durian helps," Dr T. Kamaraj, a renowned Chennai-based
sexologist told Bernama.