Italian oranges: cultivation and types
Italian oranges alone represent 3% of the world production and with a progressive ripening calendar, making them available between November to May. Among the most common types of oranges and products we can find tarocco oranges (or pigmented), navel and Sicilian red.
Grown in Sicily, they play the part of the protagonist in the Italian market share (56%), followed by Calabria (32%). In the Plain of Catania and the neighboring Syracuse territory the particular hilly microclimate keeps away the cold winds and allows the growing of the excellent tarocco. For centuries the Italian people have used these to make “spremuta” or fresh-squeezed juice. A famous Italian variety of navel oranges, which also received the European DOP, is that of Ribera, a place where a mild climate and an abundance of water favor the enhancement of the properties of this Italian produce.
The Italian soil is characterized by thousands of citrus orchards and orange groves, from the south of the renowned Conca d’Oro of Palermo (a wonder created by the Arabs and praised throughout the Mediterranean) to the greenhouses on the banks of Lake Garda, designed to serve the lords of Lombardy and Veneto, as well as contribute to the preparation of Italian candied fruit (with Genoa being a worldwide exporter).