Baobab fruit powder is usually natural. It is taken directly out of the fruit shell and usually not treated chemically otherwise processed and no other substances need to be added to make it precious.
From Fruit to Baobab Fruit Powder
It takes about half a year or longer for the Baobab fruit to ripen on the tree. The fruit can be up to 54 centimeters long and up to 20 centimeters wide. Their shapes vary from round to cylindrical-oval. The Baobab fruit has a hard outer shell, the pericardium. It is 4-10 millimeters thick. Inside, it is crisscrossed by reddish-brown, coarse fibers. The creamy to pink colored Baobab fruit powder and up to 250 seeds are embedded in these fibers. One of the outstanding characteristics is that the fruit pulp dries automatically as ripening proceeds and the fruit is still on the tree. The local populations and nowadays the food and cosmetics industry take advantage of that. The fruit fall off the trees when they are ripe. Only fruit with intact shell are collected by hand in order to avoid contamination of the inside.
Not all of the fruit shells arrive on the ground intact after falling down. This allows animals that feed on the fruit pulp or seeds easy access inside. Termites enter through cracks in the shells to get to the fruit pulp. Even monkeys, baboons, squirrels, rats, elephants, eland, impalas and other antelope as well as birds consume the fruit pulp. By swallowing and later excretion of the seeds they contribute to spreading Baobabs.
Extraction of Baobab Fruit Powder
The intact whole fruit shells are opened. The precious fruit powder, traded in the international market as a “super fruit” or “superfood”, is extracted. Seeds and fibers are mechanically separated with sieves from the fruit pulp. In a further step the naturally pre-dried fruit powder is milled finely. Further processing steps are not necessary and the powder is packaged for Trade directly.
Since Baobab fruit are processed in a few steps only the powder retains its high content of various essential vitamins, minerals, trace elements, antioxidants and fiber. Due to its valuable ingredients, Baobab fruit powder becomes more and more popular, particularly with people eating a vegetarian or vegan diet. The seeds find their use in cosmetics. They provide valuable Baobab oil, which has beneficial properties for skin care.