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15th January 2015

The Ancient Myths around the African Baobab

From Namibia and Zimbabwe to Angola and Senegal, the baobab tree continues to shine as a striking part of the African landscape.

Known as ‘The Tree of Life’ due to its capability to hold a reported 4,500 litres of water in its trunk, the fruit from this awe-inspiring gift of nature is one of the key botanicals in Whitley Neill Gin.

Founded and created by Johnny Neill, Whitley Neill contains nine botanicals, including baobab fruit, brought together to create the unique flavour. Over the past eight years, Whitley Neill has maintained a key partnership with TREE AID, an organisation that helps villagers in African drylands to improve the local environment and unlock the potential of trees, such as the baobab.

Present in a reported 32 countries across the continent, the baobab plays a key role in African culture, even to this day. A symbol of life and health to the African people, the baobab tree offers the richness of the fruit, the protein of the seeds, the calcium of the leaves.

From being used in healthy smoothie recipes to being converted into the Sunland Baobab Bar, the baobab’s versatility is now utilised in other countries, not just those in Africa.

Myth and mystery have surrounded the baobab for many years now; there are many traditions and stories that continue to be told that draw people in to magical powers the fruit may hold:

1)      A tale was once told that if you pick a flower from the Baobab tree you would anger the spirits that live within and be eaten by a lion.

2)      A myth spoke of the powers of water soaked in baobab seeds and if you were to drink it, you would be protected from crocodile attacks.

Many tales have been told about the mystery of the superfruit, but one thing is for sure, the baobab plays an instrumental part in Whitley Neill Gin. Inspired by Africa. Crafted in England.

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