Telling ripeness of mango without having to taste it
There is good news for mango lovers! You may soon be able to tell how ripe a mango is without having to taste it as researchers have identified a way to “sniff” the ripeness of the fruit.
 
They have identified the unique chemical signature of ripening for mangoes, a development that could lead to small hand-held electronic noses to detect the ripeness of not just mangoes but other fruits as well.
 
Mangoes are one of the most important and popular tropical fruits with India producing approximately 40% of the world's supply. 
 
"It is really important for people to be able to tell how ripe fruit is without having to taste it. This is important for fruit producers and supermarkets,” said lead researcher Paul Monks, professor at the University of Leicester in Britain.
 
The new research, published in the journal Metabolomics, has shown that is possible to 'sniff' the ripeness of mangoes.
 
"We used a novel fast-sensitive "electronic-nose" for sniffing volatile compounds from the ripening fruit. Popular supermarket species of mango were used. In particular, the work showed an increase in ester compounds -- the smell of pear drops -- was a particular marker of over ripe fruit," Monks noted.
 
The work has, for the first time, followed in real-time and detail the chemical signatures of ripening for mangoes, Monks said.
 
"There are some real potential applications of this research for making devices to be able to assess ripeness non-destructively. The information gained from the work could be used to develop small, hand-held electronic noses that could be deployed to assess fruit maturity prior to picking and thus determine the optimum point to harvest mature green mangoes,” he added.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.
 

 

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FII inflows jump in March; but FDIs at 12-month low
Foreign investment inflows to India shot up to US$6.2bn in March 2016 from just US$0.7bn in the preceding month, as per the RBI’s monthly bulletin for May 2016, notes Religare. This was entirely driven by FIIs, who pumped in US$4.4bn after withdrawing money in each of the last four months. Net FDI (Foreign Direct Initiative) inflows dropped to a 12-month low of US$1.9bn in March 2016 from an average run-rate of US$3.1bn during the first 11 months of the fiscal. Inflows into NRI (non-resident Indian) deposits surged to an 11-month high of US$2.3bn in March 2016.
 
 
FDI inflows at record levels in FY16: FDI touched record levels in FY16, with gross inflows of US$55.5bn, up 22.8% from FY15. As a proportion of GDP, they rose to 2.7% from 2.2% in FY15, thereby supporting investment growth amidst weak private capex. In fact, as per the Financial Times (FT), India supplanted China as the top recipient of FDI in the world in 2015, with FDI announcements of US$ 63bn (China: US$ 56.6bn). Among Indian states, Gujarat and Maharashtra led the way, garnering US$ 12.4bn and US$8.3bn, respectively. The surge in FDI inflows reiterates foreign investor confidence on India’s long-term growth potential. RBI (Reserve Bank of India) data on FDI captures actual FDI inflows into the country, whereas the FT reports FDI announcements into greenfield investment projects.
 
Services sector top recipient of FDI: As per the Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion (DIPP), the service sector (financial, banking, insurance, non-financial/ business, outsourcing, R&D, courier, technical testing and analysis) was the top recipient of FDI flows during April-December 2015 – accounting for one-fifth of the total. The computer hardware & software/infrastructure sectors were next in line, receiving 18%/12% of foreign investments. Singapore and Mauritius were the top sources of FDI, driving 58% of the inflows into India.
 
FIIs net sellers in FY16: The turmoil in global markets hurt India in FY16, with FIIs withdrawing US$2.8bn from the country in the year after pumping in a record US$ 42.2bn in FY15. This is only the second instance of FII outflows over the last decade, and is expected to have led to a sharp drop in capital flows to India, to US$46.9bn (2.3% of GDP) from US$89.2bn in FY15 (4.4% of GDP). However, the capital flows will be more than sufficient to fund the CAD, which is expected to come in at a 10-year low of 1% of GDP due to continued savings in net oil trade.
 
RBI turns net buyer of dollars in March: After three months, the RBI turned net buyer of dollars in forex markets in March 2016, as its dollar purchases exceeded sales by US$4.7bn – the highest in 11 months. The surge in capital inflows and a drop in trade deficit to a five-year low in March enabled the central bank to shore up its forex reserves, which touched US$355.6bn by end-March16; note that forex reserves have further climbed to an all-time high of US$363.1bn by end-April 16.
 
NEER/REER decline in April: India’s nominal/real effective exchange rates (NEER/ REER- 36-currency trade weighted) declined by 0.2% MoM (month-on-month) in April, even as the average value of INR fell by 0.8% against the US dollar during the month. However, the average value of the REER has appreciated by 8.4% during FY14-FY16, while the average value of INR has declined by 7.6% against US dollar on the back of dollar strength during this period. The resultant deterioration in India’s export competitiveness is likely to have contributed to dismal export performance.

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Indirect tax collections in April up 41%
India's indirect tax collections for April rose 41 percent to Rs.64,394 crore -- mainly on account of a spike in central excise realisations, a finance ministry statement said on Wednesday.
 
The figure was Rs.45,417 crore in April 2015.
 
"Central excise collections were Rs.28,252 crore during April 2016, compared with Rs.16,546 crore in the corresponding period the previous year, thus registering an overall growth of 70.7%," the statement said.
 
Service tax collections grew by 27.9% to Rs.18,647 crore in April 2016, as against Rs.14,585 crore in the same month last fiscal.
 
Overall growth in revenue collections, after discounting for additional revenue mobilisation, is 17%.
 
Customs duty collections grew 22% to Rs.17,945 crore in April, as against Rs.14,286 crore in the same month a year ago.
 
The indirect taxes collection target for the 2016-17 fiscal has been set at Rs. 7,78,000 crore.
 
Meanwhile, listing the steps taken to curb black money within and outside India, the government on Tuesday said it has uncovered indirect tax evasion of Rs.50,000 crore and undisclosed income of Rs.21,000 crore in the last two years.
 
"Enhanced enforcement measures have resulted in the unearthing of tax evasion of approximately Rs.50,000 crore of indirect taxes and undisclosed income of Rs.21,000 crore," the ministry said.
 
"The value of goods seized on account of smuggling activities has increased to Rs.3,963 crore in the last two years (32 percent increase over corresponding two previous years)," it added.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.
 

 

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