What are ancient fruits

By ancient fruits we mean all those varieties of fruit that were once widespread and marketed and are now abandoned in favor of selected cultivars. In a sense, one could say that they are the mothers of the best varieties known today and at the same time bridges and custodians of tradition, culture and the priceless biodiversity of our territories.

There are ancient fruits that have truly spanned the centuries and millennia. The Annurca apple, just to give an example, has been known for over 2,000 years and was already highly appreciated in Roman times. And so for many other varieties of primordial fruit. However, not all of them have known the same fortune as the Annurca and over time many varieties have been lost or risked being lost.

What is meant by ancient fruits

All those varieties of apples, pears, apricots, peaches, cherries and others that were once usually consumed and marketed and which today, however, are ancient fruits they barely know each other. In fact, there is a mistaken tendency to consider ancient fruits as minor fruits. Instead, they are the most precious thing offered to us for the recovery of healthy and sustainable fruit cultivation.

In fact, these fruits have given yields for decades, centuries and millennia, preserving extremely robust genetic codes. They have particular flavors and aromas, forgotten today, and are healthier and stronger, the result of a genetic selection that occurred spontaneously throughout history.

For the same reason these varieties are also more resistant to pathogensto diseases and do not need any chemical treatment or almost, proving to be particularly performing and compliant with the needs of organic production.

Because the ancient fruits have been forgotten

Like any other good, fruit and its mass production must also respond to market rules. Consumers “choose with their eyes” preferring the most beautiful fruit, the shiny one, without dents, of conventional shapes preferably. Thus the production sector began to industrialize by selecting, standardizing and often resorting to pesticides and chemical products to increase yields.

The cultivation of ancient fruits, on the contrary, requires patience in respect of the natural crop developmentproduces less aesthetically pleasing fruit, even if more nutritious, and almost does not require the use of pesticides and chemical products.

The conservation of ancient fruits

Ancient fruits are not only products of excellent quality and heritage of biodiversity, they are also a legacy of culture, customs and ancient traditions that have accompanied the evolution of man himself. Luckily, they are kept and supported by the work and commitment of nurserymen and experts with a green soul dedicated to the recovery and conservation of these precious foods to be rediscovered.

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