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Ackee / akee apple / Blighia sapida or Cupania sapida; Sapindaceae)

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Ackee fruit

Ackee fruit

The ackee, also known as acheeakee apple or akee (Blighia sapida) is a member of theSapindaceae (soapberry family), native to tropical West Africa in CameroonGabonSão Tomé and PríncipeBeninBurkina FasoCôte d’IvoireGhanaGuineaGuinea-BissauMali,NigeriaSenegalSierra Leone and Togo.[1]

It is related to the lychee and the longan, and is an evergreen tree that grows about 10 metres tall, with a short trunk and a dense crown. The leavesare pinnate,[2] leathery, compound, 15–30 centimetres long, with 6–10 elliptical obovate-oblong leaflets. Each leaflet is 8–12 centimetres long and 5–8 centimetres broad.



The flowers are unisexual and fragrant. They have five petals, are greenishwhite[3] and bloom during warm months.[4] The fruit is pear-shaped. When it ripens, it turns from green to a bright red to yellow-orange, and splits open to reveal three large, shiny black seeds, surrounded by soft, creamy or spongy, white to yellow flesh—arilli.[2] The fruit typically weighs 100–200 grams.[2]


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