Brothers recount gains in mango business

The prevailing high rate of unemployment in the country has compelled many youth to go the extra mile to survive. Some even go as far as engaging in menial jobs, selling of wares, fruits among others. Two Brothers, Dauda and Hassan Sulaiman, 26 and 24 respectively, who are mango sellers can attest to this. ADEOLA TUKURU writes. 

Dauda and Hassan Suleiman who hail from Adamawa state are among many hardworking young men trying to fend for their families despite all the odds.

The two brothers who started selling mangoes two years ago, believe that they shouldn’t rely on their parents for their education since they are also struggling to make ends meet. 

Fruit vending is a popular line of business in Nigeria as it plays a vital role in the society since fruits are good for the body. 

When Business Starter visited Garki market in Abuja it came across different people of all ages beside their wheelbarrows usually full of carefully arranged fruits. 

The sight of fresh mangoes is certainly irresistible for many fruit lovers. 

The Two brothers had only several hours to sleep per day to ensure they sell fresh

Dauda left, and Hassan

Mangoes particularly to their customers. 

What they earn monthly

Regarding their earnings, the young hard-working brothers managed to save up to N 11,000 monthly, which amount they deposited in a bank.

By saving money they ensured that their siblings in the village didn’t miss school and was also sending money for their parents in the village. 

According to Dauda, who is the oldest among the brothers said “I also wish to further my education but I will keep struggling till I achieve my goal.

“We will not beg for alms to feed. If that’s what it has to take to make it, I can’t do it and that is why I started this small business.”

Advise to their peers 

When asked to give advice to their peers

 experiencing hardships, Dauda  recommended them to understand the value of dignity in labour and create legal job opportunities for themselves. 

On vacational skills, he called on the federal government to engage youths in the society on vocational skill acquisition which make them more independent in life.

How to preserve mango fruits

Mango fruit is that one fruit majority of students can die for. During mango season you’ll see guys and ladies carrying buckets and poly bags, some even go to the extent of climbing the tree. 

I know of a lady that can go any mile just to get that sweet, succulent and juicy property in one fruit. 

Even with the rate at which this fruit is being consumed, some of them still end up in the bin. Not because we want to be wasteful but because we can’t eat all. And then it’s the end of mango season. 

No more mango, now we wait for the coming year. Though there are different ways of preserving fruits, but can mango be preserved? Can it be stored for long?

Yes and yes. Here are some methods of preserving the fruit to last till another season

Method 1: Drying

Get your mango (either by plucking or by buying)

Wash very well and then peel that back, Mix 8–9 tablespoons of lemon juice (to help retain the mango colour) in 1000 ml/4 cups/68 tablespoons of water, Slice the fruit in thin pieces into the mixture from 3 above and allow to soak, Preheat your oven to 55 degrees. 

Set the soaked mango (evenly spaced) on the oven tray and put in the oven for 18 hours, as an alternative, spread the soaked mango out in the sun (Note: the sun must be extremely scorching) till its dry but supple, depending on your taste. 

Place in a jar or plastic bag . Dust off with icing sugar (just enough to stall the tartness of the lemon juice). Seal off and place on the shelf.

Note: best consumed in the first 6 months.

Method 2: Soaking in brine

Brine is simply a solution of salt in water, some add preservative to extend its shelf life, but if you are all about team natural, use without preservation. This will last up to a year.

Get your mango (either by plucking or by buying) wash very well peel the back (optional) cut into tiny pieces. Pour in a glass jar or ceramic container and fill with water such that it covers the mango. Add approximately 3 tablespoons of salt. Cover tightly.

 Shake well and allow to sit in the sun for 3 days. Drain the soaked mango and spread under the sun for another three days. Air dry (inside your house) for at least 10 days. Package in a container and place on the shelf.

Note: shake the jar often whilst still under the sun. 3g/o.5 tsp of Potassium metabisulphite can be added as a preservative.

Method 3: Processing

Get your fully ripe mango (either by plucking or by buying). Wash properly and peel. Cut up into pieces and blend to a smooth paste.

 Add 10 to 15% sugar of the pulp. Add 2 tablespoons of lemon juice and a pinch of potassium metabisulphite to the pulp. 

Heat for three minutes at medium heat and pour into a tray already coated with vegetable oil. Set to dry under the sun till a leather consistency is observed.Cut into desired shapes and package in plastic bags.

Storage life : about 12 months (with preservative), less than 12 months without preservatives

Mango juice 

Get your fully ripe mango (either by plucking or by buying). Wash properly and peel. Cut up into pieces and blend to a smooth paste.

 Into 1000 ml of pulp, add 1000 ml of boiling water, 2 tablespoons of lime and approximately 12 tablespoons of sugar. Package in a clean bottle and sterilize in not too hot (like 60–70 degree celsius) water. Allow to cool and store. Storage life : about 12 months.

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