Uses

 

Pineapple is eaten fresh, and served sliced, chunked, or as juice. It is also a favorite when processed into marmalades, jam, jellies, or candies. Pineapple oil or essence is also used as flavoring for confectionery. Meat dishes and curries become tastier with the fruit of the pineapple added. Chutney is another for of preserving the fruit. Nata de Piña is a gelatinous product of the fermented fruit pulp which is eaten by itself as a sweet or mixed with fruit salad or halo-halo - a delicious mixture of various sweets.

In addition to its nourishing uses, the pineapple has long served medicinal purposes in folk medicine: It was found to arouse appetite; the unripe fruit was effective as diuretic and contraceptive, an in the expulsion of intestinal worms. Some scientists found in its leaves possible cure for venereal diseases.

The crown or leaves of the plant also serve as raw material for wallpaper and furnishings. The waste from canning can be further processed into animal feed.

But the most remarkable non-food use of the pineapple, which is associated only in the Philippines, is the fabric woven from the fibers extracted from its leaves. The introduction of the pineapple plant with the coming of the Spaniards did not take long before its potential as fiber was tapped by the natives who had long been weaving various fibers from other plants, including cotton and silk. The crude and difficult process of weaving the Pineapple fibers produces a fine and elegant fabric that is usually enhanced with embroidery, and can hold its own beside other beautiful fabrics produced elsewhere in the world.