Areca nut which is common among the natives as “Betel nut” comes from the Areca palm tree which grows up to a height of 1.5 meters. The frequent use of areca nut in many countries including Sri Lanka is to chew along with betel leaves.
Areca nut (betel nut) cultivation takes place in the wet and intermediate zones of Sri Lanka. There are different varieties of areca nuts grown within the areas in these zones. Even though the primary use of areca nut is to make a mixture to chew with betel leaves, there are other uses as well.
Indians use areca nuts to produce other products while Chinese use areca nuts for medicinal purposes. Powdered areca nuts are ingredients in some kinds of toothpaste manufactured in India. Areca nuts are available in both fresh and dried forms.
Areca nuts have a green husk when they are raw and fresh, but it turns yellow and then orange when it ripe. Although the nut is soft when it is raw, it hardens as the areca nut ripens.