Monday, 14 January 2013

The Meyer Lemon

We've had quite a few fruit hybrids crop up over the past year. Usually these wondrous creations are carefully cultivated in a lab by scientists wanting to invent a new taste sensations for consumers. However from time to time we are reminded that the world as we know it still has so much more to offer.

The Meyer Lemon was originally discovered over 100 years ago in China by Frank Meyer, an employee of the the US Agricultural Embassy who was stationed in the country. The fruits we first imported to American in 1908 by Meyer, however the thin skin of the lemon made transporting the delicate fruit difficult back then. Demand for the fruit waned and lovers of this particular hybrid were forced to grow  it themselves (the plant is sturdy enough to grow in a few climates including the UK) or source it at small farmers markets.

Recently new shipping and harvesting methods have allowed farmers in California to produce and export the Meyer Lemon on a mass scale.

But what does the Meyer Lemon taste like? This lemon is thought to be a natural hybrid of a traditional lemon and a mandarin. The introduction of the mandarin gives the lemon both a darker colour and a sweeter taste, however it still retains that shape which makes it clearly stand out as a lemon.

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