Smooth, Soft, and Thin Skin
Succulent and Pulpy Flesh
Making People’s Mouths Water All around the World
Jeju Island is Korea’s southernmost point. Frequented by tourists all year round, the island boasts unparalleled natural sceneries for which UNESCO has designated it a World Natural Heritage site.
In October, this picturesque site starts turning yellow. It is also the time when gamgyul (a type of citrus fruit), Koreans’ favorite winter fruit, is ripening. Since the olden days, Jeju Island has been playing a central role in producing gamgyul as it has favorable climatic and edaphic conditions for growing the fruit - an oceanic climate in a warm temperature zone, an ample amount of sunshine, and fertile volcanic ash soil. Now the unique sweet-and-sour taste and scent of Jeju gamgyul are attracting the attention of people around the globe.
Working Wonders in Relieving Fatigue, Skin-Care, and Preventing Colds
With its harmony of sweet and sour flavors, gamgyul is known for its health restoring qualities. The sour taste is due to abundant citric acid, which is believed to relieve fatigue by breaking down lactic acid and thus preventing the latter from piling up in the body.
Gamgyul is a rich repository of vitamin C. 100g of gamgyul contains as much as 36mg of vitamin C. This means that consuming just two gamgyul a day is enough to meet the required daily amount (50mg) of vitamin C for an adult. This explains why gamgyul is good for skincare and preventing colds in the winter.
And since the white inner layer of the peel that covers the flesh is rich in pectin, a dietary fiber, the fruit is also good as a diet food. The flesh also contains a lot of dietary fiber and helps improve the intestinal functions, so it is good to fight constipation and diarrhea. In addition, compared to orange varieties grown in other countries, gamgyul has twice as much of the anti-carcinogenic substances carotenoid and flavonoid. Yet another virtue of gamgyul is its smooth and thin skin that is easy to peel.
Hanrabong and Cheonhyehyang Boast the Highest Sweetness
Jeju gamgyul comes in some 340 varieties. The main one is Satsuma mandarin (citrus unshiu), but recently farmers are breeding many different kinds of gamgyul through cultivar diversification. Bare-ground gamgyul, with 10°Brix and within 1% of acidity, is grown in the clean natural environment of Jeju Island. It starts turning yellow in September and is harvested from mid-October. Hanrabong is considered to be the number one variety in terms of sweetness, flavor, and texture. It is characterized by a protruded top and soft inner layer of skin, so that it is easy to peel. Its average sweetness is 13°~14°Brix, but, depending on growing conditions, it is possible to produce the citrus with more than 16°Brix. Cheonhyehyang, meaning “strong scent wafted a thousand miles up,” is two to three times bigger than ordinary gamgyul and is really juicy. Its peel is also very thin.
Brand for Export: “Sunbreeze.” Developed Special Packing Boxes for Exported Citrus
This year, the export goal for Jeju gamgyul is 10,000 tons. With this figure in mind, a lot of efforts are being made to diversify the export markets to Canada, Russia, and Southeast Asian countries - in addition to the US and UK markets. Creating the gamgyul export brand, Sunbreeze, is a part of such efforts. The name is a combination of the words “sun” and “breeze.” Another important task is to develop more durable packing boxes for the exported fruits. The new boxes can prevent damage caused by pressure and are expected to reduce the perishability rate to a minimum. Moreover, farmers receive more education concerned with agrichemical safety, and the farms engaged in exports receive thorough plant pest inspections. All these efforts aim at producing cleaner and higher quality wholesome fruits.
Lee Yong-min, Citrus Team Chief at the Nonghyup Jeju Regional Head Office, says that gamgyul is a prestigious fruit that is highly competitive in every aspect, including quality and nutritional value. He adds, “We are trying hard to increase the exports so that overseas consumers can taste sweet Jeju gamgyul.”
Inquiries Jeju Gamgyul Assocation, Inc. Tel +82-64-720-1340~6 Fax +82-64-758-1726 Website www.jejucitrus.org
Park Sung Eun email@example.com
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