Water chestnut is the name given to slightly varying plants. One is the water caltrop (Trapa Natana and Trapa Bispo Nosa) which is majorly grown for its eatable fleshy seed. Trapa Natana can be termed as the European Water chestnut which is now rarely found in northern European region and declared as endangered in southern Europe, whereas Trapa Bisponosa is the name of water chestnut/water caltrop of Indian origin which is considered to be tastier than Chinese water chestnut and is grown as a crash-crop by the Indian farmers. The other variety is the Chinese water chestnut (Eleocharis dulcis) which is commonly used in Chinese cuisine for its edible corm (underground stem with stored food). Water chestnut (Eleocharis dulcis) is a tropical sedge with long tubular leaves, whereas water caltrop (Trapa Natana) is a water plant with huge floating leaves grown in ponds. Water Caltrop is also known as Jesuit Nut. Water chestnut is sourced with carbohydrate, dietary fiber, sugar, vitamin C, and Calcium. It offers vitamin B6, potassium, copper, riboflavin and manganese.
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The starchy eatable seed of Water chestnut was prominently cultivated in some areas of China, India and other south East Asian countries it is also naturalized in Northern Australian region as cultivators found a production of Water chestnut as a lucrative business. In Indian subcontinent it is considered as crash-crop cultivated in ponds and river fled lands after a cycle of artificial fish breeding. Water chestnut is being also grown in integrated farming format with along with catfish farming ponds resulting a positive impact on farmer’s livelihood. The low investment cost supported by multi-culinary utilization of Water chestnut is driving the water chestnut market with rising global demand. However, the climatic obstacle and changing the climate in Europe and Scandinavian countries resulted in an adverse impact on the cultivation of Water chestnut. The controlled irrigation requirement and nearly 200 frost free days need for the crop maturity are not feasible in all parts of the world resulting from the cultivation of water chestnut limited to certain geographic locations.
A variety of Water chestnut formulations have been introduced by the manufacturers, and some of the global market players manufacturing Water chestnut market include; Roland Foods LLC, SupHerb Farms, M’ Lord excellent products, Swapna Flour Mills Limited, ConAgra Foods, Inc. and JFC International, Inc. among others.