Fruit popularity spreads
ACQUIRED TASTE: Bodibo Benjamin and Stigy Stephen, from Papua New Guinea, picking cumquats at Rosewood Citrus. CUMQUATS are a sour little fruit that has been a money maker at Rosewood Citrus for years.
Farm owner Allen Jenkin said he planted three varieties of cumquats about six or seven years ago.
“We planted them for a jam-maker who wanted to buy large quantities of the fruit every year and he never bought one,” he said.
“By the time it came around to make the jam he must have changed his mind and was making something else.”
The three varieties planted at the Grosvenor farm are Calamondin, Nagami and Niwa, which are all useful for different purposes.
Although all are very sour, if eaten with the skin on it makes the fruit sweeter.
Farm manager Hugh Tully said he had only a few rows of cumquat trees but they produced a lot of fruit and they kept two pickers working for weeks.
“They are quick and easy to pick and they travel well from the farm to the market,” Mr Tully said.
“The market for the cumquats is in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane, where the Asian population snap them up.”
Mr Jenkin said the trend at the moment was preserving fruits.
“This little gem is a treat to preserve and has many uses,” he said. “It is also a very decorative fruit when preserved and is great to add to a produce display.”
Cumquats, also spelt kumquats, are a native of south Asia and the Asia-Pacific.