The "green gold" of Calabria, bergamot
Used for teas and infusions, but also for perfumes and healing products, the Calabrian bergamot is a prized and sought-after citrus fruit, which is grown in a small piece of land in Calabria, obtaining the recognition of Protected Designation of Origin from the European Union.
We are indeed in the heart of Locride, in an area that goes from Villa San Giovanni, to Siderno, towards the Strait of Messina and the sea, the coast of Reggio Calabria where a large part of this product sold worldwide is grown.
Bergamot is rich in precious substances and characterized by a unique and unmistakable aroma. Here are some useful indications if you want to learn more about this fruit with its extraordinary properties.
Properties and characteristics of the Calabrian bergamot
In the extreme tip of Calabria, in a hilly area close to the sea coast, these protected green fruits grow and are cultivated. Calabrian bergamot, green, wrinkled and with a rounded and irregular shape, you can eat fresh and by consuming it in wedges - with a rather bitter, decisive and sour taste - or by drinking it fresh juice, pure or diluted.
Bergamot is rich above all in vitamin C, vitamins of group B and vitamin A. In addition to strengthening and toning the body, this little citrus fruit also helps lower blood glucose levels.
According to recent studies, it has been seen that bergamot is useful for also lower bad cholesterol levels and therefore to prevent stroke, arteriosclerosis and heart attack. Bergamot appears to be ally also in the digestive process and is often used as an antipyretic and analgesic for treatment of flu or cold symptoms.
Also useful for its purifying, antibacterial and antiseptic properties, bergamot can also be usedpure bergamot essential oil, relaxing and antidepressant, as an essence in purity or diluted in a carrier oil or to create for example detergents and natural household products.
Externally, bergmotto is also employed to make it effective creams or lotions for oily and impure skin o shampoo antiforfora.
Read also Bergamot, an interesting phytotherapic >>
Where to buy bergamot
It is not easy to find fresh bergamot, especially in the north of the country. But know that in large urban areas, they exist centers that only market Calabrian products, such as oil, fresh bergamot, cured meats and in oil. In addition to boxes of precious citrus fruits, you can often find perfumes or fresh juices based on bergamot online and on the websites of the main local companies.
The cost? Bergamot fruit is generally sold around 3,50 - 4 euros per kilo, and is available from January to April, in some cases even a few months earlier. Keep in mind that to make a liter of juice, which in turn can be diluted, you need about 4 kilos of bergamot.
Read also Bergamot, how to grow it >>
Photo: Alessandro Zocchi / 123rf.com