US: Californian cold could make citrus fruit sweeter

Temperatures in Tulare County took a dip for the first of the year. However, according to one citrus farmer, lower temperatures aren't always a bad thing. Nick Hill from Green Leaf Farms says that when temperatures drops into the 30's (around 0oCelsius), it could make the fruit sweeter.

"It will help bring on the sugar in the fruit and it also toughens the fruit off," says Hill. "So, if we get more colder nights the fruits will fight off the cold a little bit better."

Green Leaf Farms exports citrus all over the world and according to Hill because of the recent rain his farm is off to a good start.  "With these rains it also pumps the size of the fruit up," says Hill. "So, the other important thing about the rain is it helps size the fruit."

Kevin Severns, the General Manager for the Orange Cove - Sanger Citrus Association, also claims  that when the temperature is at or around 30 degrees, the fruit could taste better: "That really is what gives our fruit a very unique flavor profile. Also helps it hold on to the tree longer so we can extend our citrus season."


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