Rogez, who published on acai's anthocyanin and fiber-rich properties in the 1990s, continues to work with the fruit and has trained a growing cadre of graduates in the ecological, chemical, and food production aspects of the acai palm
and its berry.
The acai berry is a small round berry from the acai palm
(or aqai; Euterpe oleracea), which is a species of palm tree.
Among them are products made from the fruit of the acai palm
(pronounced ah-sigh-EE), which typically grows on the edges of the Amazon forest in Brazil.
Harvested from acai palm
trees in Central and South America, the acai berry looks a bit like a large blueberry with a big seed in the middle.
In Brazil the focus is on rubber, palm heart, acai palm
, or Brazil nuts.
The acai berry is the fruit of the acai palm
and is traditionally consumed in Brazil but has gained popularity abroad as a food and functional ingredient, yet little information exists on its health effect in humans.
The acai palms
are helping to regenerate areas of the rainforest in Brazil as farmers can now make more money harvesting the fruit than from logging trees, said Green & Kerley director Shelley Green.