Rains welcome in rambutan season

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Rainy season has come and that means rambutans are back.

Fruit vendors in Naklua are among the many area sellers doing brisk business for the spiny red-, yellow- and orange-skinned fruit. Current prices are running about 20 baht per kilogram, with vendors buying stock wholesale, on average, for about 11-12 baht.

Somkhid Phongsree, who sells fruit and grilled pork on Naklua Soi 14, said she buys up to 200kg of rambutans in Rayong, but acknowledges prices vary by day, depending on stock and the number of wholesalers. From that, she makes about 1,000 baht per day in sales.

Children like school rambutan because of its sweetness.Children like school rambutan because of its sweetness.

“Children like the school rambutans because they are sweet and smell good,” agreed customer Nattanant Insorn. “I usually buy 2kg each time to take home and eat.”

Originally from Indonesia and Malaysia, rambutan trees now grow naturally in Thailand and produce a variety of types in all different colors. Golden, brown, pink, school and Jaemong breeds are grown in the east and south. The gold and pink varieties, however, are rarer and bought for home consumption and industrial use.

Thai growers have new competition, however, as Australian and Honduran farmers are now selling rambutan varieties worldwide.

Besides a sweet taste, rambutans offer other benefits, including bleaching, wastewater treatment, bacteria fighting, disinfecting and treating diarrhea.