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Durian: no smell = no sell April 9, 2007

Posted by Al in : food,science,weird , trackback

If you’ve never caught the scent of a Durian before, then you probably won’t understand why a non-smelly version of the fruit would be a good idea. After all, how many fruits do you know that are banned from being carried on most public transport and a lot of public buildings, including hotels? I have smelled a durian before, because my girlfriend likes them, and I would rather smell just about anything else, including garbage, rotten cabbage or blocked drains. There’s not many foods in this world that I don’t like, or won’t eat, but the durian is definitely one. This makes it very strange that when a Thai scientist finally managed to breed an odourless Durian, after 30 years of trying, he is stuck with a fruit that nobody wants to buy.

It turns out that Durian lovers actually like the smell of the fruit. In fact, in Malaysia and other countries neighbouring Thailand, the fruit is priced on the strength of it’s odour. I have been near stalls selling Durian in Hong Kong, and was aware of what they were selling from a good distance away – I hate to think what such stalls would smell like if they were carrying the smelliest of the fruit. Still, it’s an interesting article, and it just goes to show that what one man may think is a good idea may not be such a good idea to others.


1. Kenny - April 13, 2007

I think that despite what durian fans say about how the smell of a durian is wonderful to themselves, I can say that a durian does not smell good. And I’m confident that the newly developed durian would sell, since there are probably a large number of people out there in the world that doesn’t eat durian due to the bad smell. So, over a period of time, the newly developed durian that has no bad smell should do quite well on the market. The current durian fans are just uptight because their uniquely bad smelling fruit has been beaten by a good smelling one.

2. Kenny - April 13, 2007

Actually, I think that your last line about “what one man may think is a good idea may not be such a good idea to others” is wrong. The development of the no-smell durian is in fact an excellent idea. I’m not sure who said that a no-smell durian would be unsuccessful. But whoever said a no-smell durian would be unsucesseful is probably wrong. I reckon that there will be a market for it, and the market could be much bigger than the bad smell one. This is because I believe that many people would eat durian if the smell was not a bad one.