Hyderabad: One’s idea of a watermelon is a green outer skin and juicy, blood-red flesh. But at the Kushaiguda market and neighbouring areas, another variant is in great demand: the outer skin is still green, but the interior of the fruit is yellow.
It is grown on a farm in Bibinagar where no chemicals are used. In fact there are seven farms around the city growing this variety of watermelon. The seeds come from a company in Pune. It’s priced at Rs 30 per kilo and is grown without chemicals or special techniques for ripening.
Mr P. Ratnachary, senior horticulturist from the department of horticulture, said, “The yellow colour is from a different combination of cartenoids and anthocyanins. This is when the seeds are grown in the laboratory.”
Mr Chary explained that these are not genetically modified but are a hybrid by crossing different varieties of melons. Scientists were trying to impart different colours to melons depending on the concentration of carotenoids and anthocyanins. He said different colours such as red, yellow and pink could be achieved.
Nutritionist Sujatha Stephen said, “Yellow melons are very popular abroad but are now available in India. The yellow melons are rich in Vitamin A and C and are good for those who have eye problems.”...