Goji berry is commonly used to maintain sound health. It mainly grows in the Himalayan region of Tibet. The word ‘Goji’ is coined from the actual word ‘gougi’, which means medicinal plants. The species of Goji plants are actually deciduous and woody perennial plants. Generally, a Goji berry plant can grow 1-3 meter high.
As a food, full-grown Goji fruits can be consumed in both raw as well as cooked form. The taste is quite similar to raisins. This is often used as an ingredient in original Chinese soups. A special kind of wine is also produced from this fruit.
Due to this, the demand of this fruit has increased a lot since the past few years. In countries like China, Mongolia and Nepal, cultivation of Goji berry is done on a large scale. On the plateau of the Himalayan foothills, Goji farms can be seen in vast areas. The round red Goji Berries are very tender and thus, they are shaken from the vineyards rather than plucking to avoid spoiling. After this, they are ready for consuming either raw or dry from. Direct sunlight is generally avoided, because it is believed that sunlight can damage the nutritional values of Goji fruit.
In Tibet, these fruits are used in festivals and other celebrations, as they believe that a sense of well being is associated with this fruit. In the interior villages and typical mountain rural areas, Goji plants are planted in front of the houses and other open areas. It also grows randomly on the roadsides and people never destroy these plants.
The livelihood of poor villagers depends largely on this Himalayan fruit. They sell these fruits in the village markets and make money. The markets serve as a great place to buy and sell these berries.