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plum
This is a type of stonefruit, with a fine skin and sweet juicy flesh. There are two big plum families, the European and the Japanese. The difference lies in the shape and flesh, which determines its use. The Japanese plum is normally round and juicier than the European and it is therefore consumed fresh. On the other side, the European plum is usually oval, contains less juice and it is normally used to cook, to dry or as compote.

Origin
Plums originate in the Middle East. Romans took them to Italy around 150 BC and, from there, they reach the rest of Europe. In “La Serreta”, a small place between the villages of Abarán and Cieza in the South Eastern Spanish province of Murcia, remains from the 3rd century AC of pinewood, plum and peach stones have been found. This is evidence of the first reference of the cultivation of these two types of fruit in this area. The most important production areas are the Mediterranean (for the Japanese plum), the Balkans and Germany (for the European plum). Overseas plums are grown in South African and Chile and usually belong to the Japanese family. Europe enters production in May in Spain, followed by Italy and France (for Japanese plums) and Central Europe in August / September (for European family).

Properties
Plums have a balanced content in vitamins (C, B, A and E). They are rich in potassium and have considerable amounts of calcium and magnesium. It is like a natural and cheap pharmacy pill. Plums stimulate the metabolism of carbohydrates, fights stress and helps towards a better performance in general. They are also a good laxative.

Recommendations of conservation and consumption
They should be kept refrigerated and eaten at room temperature, to enjoy their full flavour. It is eaten as a whole, skin on.
 
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