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Pomegranate - Exotic Fruits
Pomegranate belongs to the Lythraceae family, the pomegranate grows on tree called Punica granatum in Latin. Its geographic origin area stretchs from Central Asia to West Asia. A grenade fossilized during the Bronze Age was found in Tel es-Sa’idieh, in Jordan. The Uluburun boat, found in Turkey near Kas, contained Cypriot amphorae filled with pomegranate seeds. In the tomb of a noble Egyptian from the time of Ramses IV, grenades were found as funeral offerings. The apple-shaped fruit turns from green to orange-red and is not considered a berry, since its pulp is neither fleshy nor stringy. Its diameter reaches 15 centimeters and it is divided into several interior walls. Unlike bananas and avocados, pomegranate does not continue to ripen after picking, so it is not a climacteric fruit. There are 1200 varieties of pomegranates which have been cultivated both for the beauty of their flowers and the delicate taste of their fruit. Each variety is linked to a terroir and a producing country, for example Wonderful from Israel, Tendrar from Spain and Hicaz from Turkey. The skin and juice of the pomegranate have been used for centuries to dye oriental rugs. In fact, cooking the fruit makes it possible to obtain a black ink which was used in particular in India to dye wool. Pomegranate and its juice are used worldwide to enhance meaty dishes or fruit salads. From the juice, sweet pomegranate wines are made in Armenia and Israel. The main producers of this fruit on the planet are India, with 900,000 tonnes, Iran with 800,000 tonnes, China with 400,000 tonnes, the United States with 200,000 tonnes, as well as, to a lesser extent, Pakistan, Iraq, Turkey, Israel and Morocco.