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  • Fruits are pretty great.

  • For early humans they served as delicious, calorie-rich foods,

  • that could be easily collected and eaten without any preparation.

  • It's even been suggested, that the ability to distinguish between red and green

  • was evolutionary selected for us, so that we can find fruits, and tell if they were ripe or not.

  • Of course today, finding any fruit you want is as easy as going to the grocery store, and finding the right aisle.

  • Many of us might not even realize, that fruits we eat might not come from the same country we live in, or even the same continent.

  • In fact, many of our favorite fruits originated in entirely different landscapes and climates.

  • And today, are grown thousands of miles away from our grocery stores.

  • So, let's take a look at the geography of our fruits.

  • Starting us off, we have apples, which hail from the Central Asia region,

  • around where the three countries of China, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan meet.

  • Its wild ancestor, malus sieversii, is still found throughout this region,

  • and China remains the #1 world producer, accounting for 48% of the global apple production.

  • The earliest records of apricots reach back to ancient Armenia - its scientific name is literally "Prunus Armeniaca".

  • Whether it originated here is disputed, with some suggesting India and China.

  • But its theoretical range includes all of these places, and today, Uzbekistan is the top producer.

  • Avocados, sometimes called "alligator pears", originated in south-central Mexico, specifically in Tehuacan Valley.

  • Evidence shows, locals have been eating the ancestors of avocado for up to 10,000 years.

  • And to this day, Mexico remains the #1 producer in the world.

  • Bananas in plantains, which are technically berries, got their beginnings in Indomalaya.

  • The earliest record of their domestication likely comes from New Guinea, from up to 10,000 years ago as well.

  • Despite this, India holds the title as the top producer, with China close behind.

  • The genus blueberries belong to, vaccinium, occur all around the North Pole.

  • But the ones we eat today, come from North America,

  • mostly the north- and eastern parts of the United States, and south-central Canada.

  • So, it's no surprise that the United States leads global blueberry production, with Canada coming in second.

  • Okay, so cantaloupes are named after the town Cantalupo di Sabina in Italy.

  • Where cantaloupes definitely did not originate from.

  • But cantaloupe literally translates to "howling wolf", and I just think that's cool.

  • As for where they came from, no one really seems to know.

  • Some say Persia, some say Afghanistan, and others say Armenia.

  • Roughly, this area is agreed upon though.

  • But today it's China, that produces 51% of all cantaloupes.

  • Cherries on the other hand, are native to Italy, and all of Central Europe for that matter.

  • Funnily enough, the name "cherry" comes from outside of Europe:

  • from the Norman "cherise", from the Latin "cherisum", and from the ancient Greek region Kerasous,

  • located in Turkey, where cherries were first imported into Europe from.

  • And where they still do, as Turkey remains the #1 producer of sweet cherries in the world.

  • Clementines are a fairly new fruit, which arose as a hybrid between a mandarin orange and a sweet orange in the late 1800s.

  • This spontaneous cross was actually observed by humans,

  • as it literally happened in the garden of an orphanage, in the city of Misserghin, Algeria.

  • The orphanage was headed by a Frenchman named Marie-Clement Rodiers, which is where the name "clement-tine" comes from.

  • China, again, is the leading world producer today.

  • Coconuts occur throughout tropical, coastal regions.

  • Since they float in water, they're easily and quickly dispersed across the oceans.

  • Their huge range means they were actually domesticated on two entirely separate occasions.

  • Once in the Indian Ocean, in Sri Lanka and the Maldives; and once in the Pacific, in the Philippines and Indonesia.

  • Today, Indonesia is still the greatest producer.

  • The first people to harvest cranberries were Native Americans.

  • Tribes like the Narragansett would use them both as food and dyes, in New England region.

  • And the recipes for cranberry sauce were seen in pilgrim cookbooks, as early as 1663.

  • So, it's no surprise, that the US remains the top producer.

  • Dates are some of the oldest cultivated fruits in the world,

  • first found in the ancient civilizations of Mesopotamia and Egypt.

  • Thought to have originated in Iraq around 50 million years ago,

  • while the earliest evidence of cultivation comes from an archaeological site in Pakistan,

  • from around 7000 BCE. Today, Egypt is the world's biggest producer.

  • The fig has much the same range as the date palm, but is even older,

  • with evidence of its cultivation and consumption reaching back 11,000 years, predating wheat and rye.

  • Findings in the ancient village of Gilgal in the Jordan valley, place the domestication of figs around 9400 BCE.

  • Suggesting, figs may have been the very first example of humans practicing agriculture,

  • one thousand years, before the next crops were cultivated.

  • Their biggest producer today, Turkey, isn't too far away either.

  • Grapefruits (which are gross, and don't taste anything like grapes),

  • actually came from another cross between two citrus fruits.

  • This time, the Jamaican sweet orange and the Indonesian pomelo.

  • The cross occurred on the island of Barbados in the Caribbean, and were originally called "shaddocks".

  • Despite its origin of the tropical island, however, today - once again, China is the #1 producer,

  • accounting for 48% of all production. Geez China, relax.

  • Grapes on the other hand, do taste good, and come from the Middle East where human agriculture first got started.

  • The growing of grapes also led to the domestication of yeast,

  • which very quickly led to the discovery, and subsequent abuse, of alcohol.

  • It's actually unclear, what came first: the domestication of grapes, or the craft of wine-making.

  • But both occurred around 10,000 years ago, in Georgia and Armenia.

  • I'm sure you can guess the overall leader in grape production.

  • But in terms of grapes used especially for wine, Spain leads the world.

  • Guavas are a lesser-known fruit, but they're pretty amazing, so I decided to include them.

  • They originally come from southern Mexico, and the rest of Central America.

  • Papayas have about the same exact range as well, but today, India leads the way in production of both of these fruits.

  • Honeydew is delicious, and anyone who thinks differently can fight me in the comment section.

  • It came from northern Africa, particularly Algeria. But yeah, China's now the top producer.

  • This one might hurt a little, but kiwis are from China, not New Zealand.

  • Specifically from around the Yangtze river valley.

  • They weren't cultivated much in China, however, and it was only in the 20th century,

  • that kiwis were brought to New Zealand, and eventually became a commercial crop there.

  • Then, these were exported to the US and UK, and that's why they're associated with New Zealand now.

  • Since then however, who else but China came in, and now contributes 55%

  • of the world-wide production, followed by Italy, and then New Zealand.

  • The kumquat, if you don't know, looks like an orange, but is about the size of an olive.

  • Like so many other fruits, they come from the southeast Asian region.

  • Lemons are also thought to have originated here, but more specifically - in the state of Assam in eastern India.

  • And these are actually also a hybrid, between two older fruits:

  • the bitter orange and the citron, both of which originated around this area as well.

  • And to this day, India leads the world in production.

  • Limes, well, are mostly the same, but actually no one can really agree on what a lime is.

  • There are several different things people call limes, which are all different combinations of citron, mandarin oranges and pomelo.

  • All of which come from southeast Asia. And so does the mango, for that matter.

  • Olives got their start - of course - in Italy, but quickly spread throughout the Mediterranean region.

  • As early as 5,000 years ago, olives were being grown commercially on the Greek island of Crete.

  • But today, Spain is the biggest commercial supplier.

  • Passion fruit is a weird name, but they're the first fruit I've mentioned exclusively from South America.

  • Originating from southern Brazil, through Paraguay, into northern Argentina.

  • Peaches, again, come from north-west China, between the Tarim basin and the Kunlun mountains.

  • And wow, no way! China also produces 58% of the world's peaches.

  • The pear originated nearby, in western China, in the foothills of the Tian Shan mountains.

  • Pretty close to where apple's from, if you remember. And yeah, China produces the most of these too.

  • Pineapples are thought to have started in southern Brazil and Paraguay.

  • Just like the passion fruit, except way better.

  • Uh, Costa Rica actually leads the world in pineapple production, so... good for them, honestly.

  • Plums were also one of the earliest domesticated fruits, originating in eastern Europe in the Caucasus mountains.

  • But today, China wins again with 55% of the world plum production.

  • Pomegranates originally came from Iran, and they're the only fruit I found,

  • with an entire "symbolism" section on its Wikipedia page.

  • So it's safe to say, it was pretty important to many early civilizations.

  • And today, Iran remains the #1 producer of pomegranates.

  • Raspberries are hard to pin down, they propagated throughout Europe very quickly.

  • But it's thought they originated somewhere in Turkey. Despite this, today Russia is the biggest producer.

  • The modern strawberry is another example of a recent hybrid crossing,

  • between the North American fragaria virginiana, and the Chilean fragaria chloensis.

  • The two species were first crossed in Brittany, France, in the 1750s.

  • Although today, the US is the greatest producer of them.

  • Tomatoes are are definitely fruits, and despite being closely associated with Italian foods, like pasta or pizza,

  • they came from thousands of miles away, in the Andes mountains.

  • There are many myths, about how the tomato got to Europe.

  • Some suggest, it was Columbus who first took them back across the Atlantic. Others say, it was Hernán Cortés.

  • And then there's another story, about two Spanish Jesuits in Mexico. But basically, there's no consensus.

  • China wins again in terms of production, however, with 31% of the world production.

  • Lastly, we have watermelon - which started off looking like this in East Africa, right around Ethiopia.

  • Then roughly 5,000 years ago, the Egyptians began cultivating the fruit,

  • altering it, until we got what we know now as watermelon.

  • But unsurprisingly, China today accounts for 68% of world-wide watermelon production.

  • That's all the fruits I'm going to include. I tried to get the most popular ones,

  • but I definitely left out some of the more regionally important ones.

  • I think the biggest takeaways would be, that southeast Asia

  • and the Middle East in particular, are where a lot of our favorite fruits originated.

  • While the greatest producer of fruits today, is by far China.

  • Why so many delicious fruits came from these areas, is the topic for another video, however.

  • So, I hope you enjoyed this.

  • If you did, and would like to see where our vegetables, where our meats, where our spices came from,

  • well, give this video a like, and maybe comment, telling me what you'd like to see.

  • To make sure you don't miss out on another video - hey, you can subscribe, if you want.

  • I'll be back next week with another video. Thanks for watching.

Fruits are pretty great.

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果物の地理 (The Geography of Fruit)

  • 95 3
    juuuddddy に公開 2021 年 01 月 14 日
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