Es Garrover de Mallorca, the first marketing company of exclusive products made with our ecological carob tree, was born with the intention of giving added value to a high quality, local and ecological product; the carob. On the one hand, we aim to give value to a product of high quality (both nutritional and organoleptic), ecological production and totally respectful of the natural environment (Km. 0) and, on the other hand, encourage the production of a typical Mediterranean fruit (giving the value that it deserves), which has always been associated with the Mallorcan agricultural landscape, but which has been declining and losing value over the years.
If something characterizes us, it is our passion for the carob, and for the Mallorcan landscape; starting with our farmers, who are the engine of our agricultural landscape, and ending with our customers, to whom we can offer a local product of high quality, and respectful to the environment. Therefore, we feel committed to the care of our fields, landscapes, surroundings, and tradition.
For this, we have initiated a pilot project of innovation and research of the Mallorcan carob, subsidized by FOGAIBA (Ministry of Environment, Agriculture and Fisheries), which pursues different objectives;
- First-hand knowledge of our partners, through personalized visits to make them understand our business philosophy, make them part of our project, and advise them first-hand about the latest developments in the sector.
- Characterize the different Mallorcan varieties of locust beans present on the farms that supply us with carob.
- Explore which are the most productive varieties, and with better nutritional and organoleptic properties for each of our eco products.
- Establish experimental farms to investigate more productive and efficient cropping systems and varieties.
In Mallorca, more than 30 varieties of carob trees are described, many of them exclusive from our island, which are part of our cultural heritage. Despite the agronomic importance of algarrobo on the island (which has not been economical so far), there is a gap in the knowledge of these varieties, and in their properties. About 15 years ago a survey was made on the varieties of carob presented on the Balearic Islands (Tous et al., 2001), and the morphological characteristics of the fruits of the different varieties were described. It was surprising that the different varieties are very well geographically structured on the islands. In this way we find the variety Bugadera in es Pla de Mallorca, the variety Vera i de la Mel in the southwest of the island and the variety Duraió in the Sierra. Since then nobody else has researched this culture, which we believe has a high potential for landscape, economic and nutritional, and especially for the future (with the effect of global warming), due to its high resistance to drought , and its low agronomic demand.
This pilot project will explore for the first time on the island which are the varieties with a greater nutritive value, and with more antioxidant properties, so as to the future to promote the cultivation of these local varieties. In addition, we intend to compile the distinctive characteristics of the different varieties present in Mallorca, by means of a photographic record and a graphic description, which will allow us to keep this popular culture in written form, as it is being lost today. In fact, less and less farmers are able to recognize the varieties present on their farms, which could lead to the loss of popular knowledge very important to our island.
Finally, Es Garrover de Mallorca has developed two experimental fields; (1) one with different varieties of carob trees: in order to investigate the productivity and nutritional and organoleptic properties of each one, and (2) another to improve the pollination of the crop: through the use of new hermaphrodite varieties as pollinators) developed by agricultural research centers, along with Mallorcan variety Duraió (females). In a study that was done at the state level, this Mallorcan variety excelled among the most productive and of better quality.
Our purpose is to convey to the consumer the essence of our products, the effort, from the farmer, the manual collection of the fruit and its authenticity. Because we are convinced what we want to invest in innovation and development, to increase the performance and quality of our products, we will be able to give the carob the value it deserves. From Es Garrover de Mallorca, we will tell you all the details that are emerging from this pioneering study on Mallorcan carob.
PILOT PROJECT GROUP
Products Martín, Laboratorio Quimiotest (Mario Grau), Jaume Seguí (Biologist), Biel Morell (farmer), Oliver Brenneisen (products and photography) and Juana Verger, manager Es Garrover de Mallorca (project coordinator).