Podosiri are the berries of the açaí palm tree (its scientific name, Euterpe oleracea, was given by German botanist Carl Friedrich Philipp von Martius (1794–1868) in the 19th century). Nowadays, the berry is known worldwide as açaí, except in Suriname, where it’s called podosiri. ‘Siri’ means ‘seed’ in Sranan Tongo. The conservation of the fruit’s indigenous name simultaneously allowed for the preservation of local knowledge concerning the berries, such as its medicinal benefits and other uses. This contrasts the practice of colonial cultures ascribing names of their own, which are then introduced back to the locals through education and science - often resulting in the loss of both the original name as well as correlating traditional knowledge.
Podosiri grows on the açaí palm tree. In Suriname, this palm tree is only found in forests, in marshy areas. In Brazil, the trees are grown on plantations. These are the source of the açaí that we find in the Netherlands today (for instance in juice, or açaí bowls).