Bonga Foods is pleased to announce the U.S. introduction of its new line of baobab products now available at select Whole Foods Market stores in the Southern Pacific region. The baobab (BEY-oh-Bab) tree has long been a pillar of African existence. Standing tall and strong this “Tree of Life” (or “upside down tree” with branches resembling a root system) produces fruit that is exceptionally high in soluble fiber and vitamin C; rich in minerals and electrolytes; bursting with antioxidants; and is one of the few plant sources of calcium. Baobab fruit is not pasteurized, heat extracted, freeze dried or concentrated so the nutrient synergy is not compromised. Its low glycemic index acts as a satiating ingredient due to its low sugar and high fiber.
The new line debuts with four varieties of Baobab Superfood Chews: Mango, Pomegranate, Raspberry and Strawberry, available at select Whole Foods Market stores throughout Southern California, Arizona, Nevada and Hawaii at a suggested retail price of $3.99. Just one, 40-gram serving of Bonga Foods Raspberry Superfood Chews provides 28 percent of the daily value for dietary fiber; 60 percent daily value for Vitamin C; and an antioxidant ORAC value* of 10,000—more than dried goji berries (6,400), cherries (2,720) or blueberries (1,162). (*ORAC stands for Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity and is a unit of measurement for antioxidants developed by the National Institute on Aging in the National Institute of Health).
“We are thrilled to bring the first Bonga Foods baobab products to store shelves this month and support the women who harvest this Sub-Saharan superfood by giving back 10 percent of profits to the Bonga Foundation,” said Bonga Foods Co-Founder Mary Grace. “Bonga means gratitude in Zulu, one of the dialects spoken by the women who harvest the fruit in southern Africa. It expresses not only our gratitude for this wonderful ‘tree of life’ and its nutrient-rich superfruit, but for the earth and the harvesters.”
This amazing superfood dehydrates naturally inside the fruit of the baobab tree so the nutrients remain intact. Baobab powder is simply separated from its seed and sieved in its natural, unprocessed form before packing. The unique combination of nutrients found synergistically in baobab is not compromised since the fruit does not need to be pasteurized, heat extracted, freeze dried or concentrated. Bonga Foods practices sustainable, wild harvesting of the baobab fruit to create its delicious and nutritious products while nurturing local communities by providing sustainable income for women in southern Africa and protection of the ancient trees. Bonga Foods created the Bonga Foundation to support the harvesters and their families as well as other charitable organizations, creating circles of women supporting women in Africa and here in the U.S.
Although the baobab tree has supported life in Africa for thousands of years, it is still new here in the U.S. and consumers are just beginning to learn about what a life-giving superfood it is. According to David N. Bell, President of Bell Advisory Services, who wrote the 2013 White Paper The ORAC Storm: “Clinical research links antioxidant-rich diets to important human health benefits. A recent study used ORAC to measure the antioxidant levels of foods that contribute to beneficial health outcomes in a number of large-scale clinical studies. Bonga Foods’ baobab products provide superior antioxidant protection against five primary free radicals and can make a valuable – and delicious – contribution to your optimal health.”
In addition to the many well-documented benefits of healthy fiber for digestive health, lowering cholesterol, promoting healthy blood sugar levels, reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease, and helping people lose or maintain a healthy weight, and recent reports that higher blood levels of Vitamin C may be the ideal nutrition marker for overall health, other potential benefits attributed to high-fiber, vitamin C-rich and antioxidant-loaded baobab include: increasing energy levels, reducing fatigue and improving sleep patterns; boosting the immune system; enhancing recovery from exercise; and promoting mental clarity and healthy skin.
Products in the Bonga Foods line, also available for sale online here,