Kenya is home to some of the best citrus fruits like lemon which collectively form the fourth biggest fresh fruit export after bananas, pineapples and mangos. There are about ten thousand hectares of citrus fruits in the country. Lemon may have first come to the country through Catholic Missionaries during the pre-colonial period. There are two types that go into production of essential lemon oil, a popular antiseptic product, namely Ponderosa and Meyer.
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The biggest sources of the two types in the country include the Coast and Eastern provinces. Rift Valley, especially in Trans Nzoia is another major source of the crop. Even in places like Wajir in the northern regions, the citrus plant grows and provides a source of income to the sedentary communities. Irrigated fiends extend for kilometers in some of the driest parts of the country, north of the equator.
Kenya provides at least two cultivars of lemon including Ponderosa as well as Meyer. Both offer the Eureka and Lisbon acids. Ponderosa is a cross between a normal lemon and a citron fruit. It grows quite tall to reach up to twenty four feet in height. It is characterized by evergreen, shiny and lengthy leaves. Its first growth was in Maryland in the late 1880s through what many believe was a an accidental seedling.
Its best uses in the country include the making of lemonade drinks as well as fresh juice. Its typically bigger size than a typical lemon means that it has a larger juice capacity. Despite having a citron side quality, its taste is quite lemon-like and even the acid has the same potency. It also features in pie making as a single fruit is sizable enough to replace two or three typical lemons.
Meyer, on the other hand, is closer to the citrus family as it is either a hybrid of a lemon with the closely-related orange or a mandarin fruit. Its first widespread growth was in the middle of the 1940s in California in the United States. Its soft-looking shiny skin belies the fact that it tastes sweeter than a common lemon. It contains more of the Lisbon acid than Eureka, which may explain the sweet, less acidic but intoxicating effect on a user.
The production of Kenya lemon oil from both Eureka and Ponderosa involves cold pressing. This retains about 100 percent of the ingredients including the potent ascorbic, acetic and lactic acids. Ascorbic is essential in the immunity system.
Both sources of Kenya lemon essential oil provide high amounts of dietary fiber at 11 percent of the daily values. They also bring 90 percent of the daily needs of vitamin C due to their ascorbic acid. The lemon slice, despite its highly acidic content also provides 3 percent of starch and 5 grams of calories.
Thus, if you are in search of a less acidic and tasty essential oil, then you can select Eureka lemon oil from Kenya. If on the other hand your choice is for copious amounts of juice with a potent acidic content, Ponderosa is the one to choose. The best thing about lemon juice is that it retains the same strong anti-pathogenic qualities as a whole fruit.