Die Cut 8.5
Issue Date: April 25, 2008
City: Burlingame, CA
The kiwifruit (Actinidia deliciosa) is native to China, where it is known as the “National Fruit” of the People’s Republic. In the early 1900s, the fruit, then quite misleadingly known as the Chinese gooseberry (not part of the gooseberry family), was exported to New Zealand. At this time, it was renamed after the kiwi, a native bird of New Zealand.
Currently, Italy is the top kiwi producer in the world, followed by New Zealand and Chile. China, the original home of the kiwifruit, has never been recognized as a leading producer, but it is still grown in some areas near the Yangtze River and Sichuan.
The kiwifruit, which grows on a vine, thrives in temperate areas having hot summers. The fruit is normally two to three inches long and about two inches in diameter. It has a “hairy,” dull, greenish-brown skin with bright green or golden flesh. The flesh contains rows of small, black, edible seeds. The kiwifruit’s cool, refreshing flavor is similar to that of strawberries, melons, and bananas, but with a uniquely sweeter taste. Rich in vitamin C and potassium, the kiwifruit is said to alleviate asthma symptoms and promote good cardiovascular health.
In 2008, the kiwifruit was part of a set of Tropical Fruit stamps issued by the United States Postal Service.