Ice-Cream Bean Tree – Inga edulis

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Inga edulis is a fruit native to South America. It is widely grown, especially by indigenous Amazonians, for shade, food, timber, medicine, and production of the alcoholic beverage cachiri. It is popular in Peru, Ecuador, Pernambuco-Brazil and Colombia. The name ‘inga’ is derived from its name with the Tupí people of South America.

Mature trees of Inga edulis reach 30 m high and 60 cm diameter at breast height, usually branching from below 3 m. The branches form a broad, flat, moderately dense canopy. The pods contain black seeds which are embedded in a thick white juicy pulp that tastes slightly like vanilla ice cream.