|▲ Andong Sanyac Ma Association / President Park Young-bok|
Andong Sanyac Ma is called as a mountain eel. During the Imjin War, the monk Sameongdaesa recovered strengths of soldiers with Ma (yam) and the fastest man in the world Usain Bolt ate it as a nutritious meal. Yam produced in Andong accounts for more than 70% of the national production. <PowerKorea> met Park Young-bok, President of the Andong Sanyac Ma Association.
Andong Sanyac Ma is called as a mountain eel
Park said “The association is a pure farmers’ organization established in 2007 and 820 farm families in 9 towns and villages in Andong are members. Ma is also called sanyac because it is grown in mountains. Yam is a perennial vine, and its roots are used as medicine, and it is the representative agricultural product of Andong, which accounts for more than 70% of the cultivated areas nationwide.” Yam has been cultivated in Andong for over 100 years and it is rich in arginine and saponin, which strengthen physical functions and promote hormones. In Donguibogam, it is written that yam is warm and tasty, protects the weak body, fills the five intestines, strengthens the muscles and bones, relaxes the mind, and grows wisdom. Andong has a large daily temperature difference and its soils and climate are good and clean. Andong yam is rich in bioactive substances that prevent aging and starch, amylose, choline, saponins, and minerals that promote digestion. It also contains a large amount of healthy ingredients such as saponin, mucin, vitamin A, vitamin B, vitamin C, calcium, sodium and potassium which makes it as one of the best functional foods and medicinal ingredients.
Andong yam takes 70% of the whole output in the nation
Andong yam is grown by 820 farms in 500ha of cultivation area of Bukhu-myeon, Waryong, Seohu, Pungcheon, and Nokjeon-myeon. It is registered to the Korean Intellectual Property Office and is marked with information of produce in the region. The Andong region has a sandy soil that drains well and has an average annual temperature of around 12 degrees Celsius, providing natural conditions suitable for yam cultivation. Also, Andong yam has firm flesh and excellent storage properties. Park said “Andong yam powder is being used to make teas, beverages and breads and the consumption is increasing year by year. We will produce Andong yam with thorough quality control and continue to promote it in cooperation with local administration.” Andong yam is expected to be nurtured as a high-income crop for farmers and will help develop the local economy.
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