By Livia Caroline Neves
In the U.S, specially in the last five years, the Brazilian small berry named “açaí” has gained a huge market territory and even being endorsed by important personalities in sports, music and TV as such surf legend Kelly Slater, skater Bob Burnquist, singer Wynonna Judd and show host Oprah Winfrey. In part also because of the magnificent work of public relations and pioneering, in 2000, of Sambazon (first company to bring the açaí from Brazil to the U.S market), its two founders, Ryan and Jeremy Black, and their instinctive marketing vision together with a strong ecological consciousness of sustainable development.
During this last years there has been a lot of “hype” among thousands of people in U.S. over this fruit and specially those folks concern with their balanced diet and good nutrition. The fruit is very rich in antioxidants and lipids, helps to combat cholesterol and free radicals. The tremendous success initially in Brazil and now worldwide is the consequence of three simple combined facts: its nutrition values with the delicious taste and natural energy power.
Açaí has become so popular with Americans living in large metropolises as New York, Los Angeles and Chicago, which can now be found in different types and forms, whether in capsules, juices, or in the traditional original format – as a complete meal, served in a bowl and with options to include banana and/or strawberries slices and/or granola on the top. This type of “delicious and powerful natural meal” make a special success among athletes and conscious living folks concern with their body.
A Folkloric Tale:
Many Years ago there was an Indian tribe where today is the city of Belem. At a certain time the food scarcity became a problem to its inhabitants, and the tribe chief decided to pass a law not permitting births. Ironically and by destine, the chief’s daughter, names Iaça, became pregnant. The Chief did not go on back in his decision and ordered his own grandson to be executed, Iaça was crying day and night, due to the loss of her son, until one night, when she heard the crying of her lost son, coming from the direction of a tree that had some small fruits of wine color.
In the following day, Iaça was found dead, embracing the trunk of such a tree. The chief then requested fruit bunches to be picked up and the wine extracted from the fruits, which was used to feed the Indians from the tribe. He named the little fruit Açaí in honor to his daughter (Iaça in reverse), and eventually finished with the decree that forbade the birth of children once there was enough fruit to feed everyone.
Half pound of Açaí pulp
Half cup of granola
A table spoon of honey
One ounce of guarana syrup
(available in Brazilian markets)
A third part of a banana
A glass of mineral water
Blend it all together with ice cubes, or if you prefer, with two scoops of apple or vanilla ice-cream.