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Tahiti Lime Origin

Most of the citric fruits such as lemons, limes and oranges come from Asia. The lemon tree was, at first, a type of shrub which spread spontaneously in the fields between India and southeast of the Himalaya. It is still possible to find wild and primitive lemon varieties in these places.

There are different versions of how lemon became known in Europe. Some say it was brought by the Muslims between the 7th and 9th Centuries, during the period when they took over most part of the European continent, and this fruit was rapidly disseminated.

However, there are some reports that the Romans already knew lemons and used them medicinally, even before this fruit was brought by the Arabians.

Anyway, in the Americas, lemon was brought by the Portuguese and Spanish pioneers in the 16th Century.

It is estimated that it all began with the cultivation of the Sicilian lime (Citrus limon), which is the most suitable variety for cooler and drier climates, therefore, with difficulty to develop in Tropical climate, that is, hot and humid.

For this reason, Brazil needed to develop varieties better adapted to the country’s climate and soil, in order to become a large producer of this fruit.

Today, Brazil is one of the most important worldwide producers, mainly of Tahiti lime, a hybrid variety resulting from the breeding of the Sicilian lime with the Persian lime, also known, mainly in Europe, as Acid Lime or Tahiti Acid Lime.

The origin of the Tahiti lime in the world is not clearly known, but in Brazil it was likely introduced directly from the Mediterranean as from the 17th Century.