Adventure and exploration around the globe
From the 1700s, when tall ships carried perfumes and oils across the oceans, to the 1930s and 40s, when famed researcher Ernest Guenther travelled the world in search of the best sources of essential oils, adventure and exploration has been deep in Givaudan’s roots. That spirit lives on today, as we continue to seek inspiration and innovation outside the lab to all corners of the world. We call these adventures ‘Taste Treks’ and, in 2016, we’re celebrating the 10th anniversary of TasteTrek® Citrus.
Citrus flavours exist in countless forms, all across the globe, from cold limoncello in Italy, to nimbu pani squeezed fresh on the streets of Delhi. Throughout a decade of exploration, Givaudan has whisked its customers away on voyages of discovery. We bring them to ‘street level’, and take them to the foliage of some of the world’s most exclusive citrus groves, hunting high and low for new citrus inspirations and unique flavour combinations that help to inspire our customers to re-invent citrus-based products, in both the beverages and food categories.
Marissa, Beverage Marketer: “TasteTrek® is all about going off the beaten track and getting creative to capture the rarest flavours – heading to remote areas that are renowned for specific ingredients or unique flavour combinations. As a result, our customers get innovative, authentic taste experiences that harness the true essence of their origins.”
Citrus variety collection
Our first ever citrus TasteTrek® took place in the renowned groves of University of California Riverside (UCR) – the home of over 1,000 rare and commercial varietals, and a site that remains close to our hearts. So much so that in 2015, Givaudan completed a USD 1 million donation to fund ‘the Givaudan citrus variety collection endowed chair’, which will help support and maintain the UCR’s Citrus Variety Collection.
The TasteTrek® Citrus 10th Anniversary Collection
To celebrate the tenth year of TasteTrek® Citrus, Givaudan has curated a special collection of flavours, drawn from a decade of work that captures the cultural and regional nuances of citrus. From rare varieties, to local favourites, to the most commercially successful fruits around the globe, the collection includes flavours with relevance to seven different countries: USA, Italy, Brazil, Japan, India and China, to name a few.
From Japan, we bring you the world’s smallest mandarin: the ‘Sakurajima Mikan’. Named after the Sakurajimo volcano, whose ashes fertilise the groves of Kagoshima prefecture, the Sakurajima Mikan gives a powerful punch of intensely juicy, tropical orange.
Then we have the ‘Konkan Seedless Lemon’ from India, which takes its name from an area of rugged coastline. The Konkan Seedless has green sugarcane sweetness and hints of spices and flowers. These fruits are traditionally called lemons, although they are usually picked and eaten green.
In Italy, the ‘Femminello Lemon’ is the number one choice for Limoncello, a delicious Italian lemon liqueur mainly produced in Southern Italy, thanks to the high oil content in its peel and lack of bitter notes. A natural hybrid of citron and sour orange, its clean, zesty profile has made it Italy’s favourite lemon.
Spain’s ‘Sanguinelli Blood Orange’ gets its colour from the same pigmentation found in pomegranates. While its colour is bold, its taste is surprisingly subtle – peely, fruity with a light berry note.
TasteTrek® Citrus: a global exploration
Seeking out each country’s most unique locations
On our 2011 trek to China, our flavourists found an orchard in Zhejiang Province, by the East China Sea, that produced ‘Chumen Wendan Pomelos’ unlike any other. Along with its juicy, floral taste, its white flesh has a slight salty taste but is fresh and sweet at the same time.
On our mikan trek to Japan, we came upon the Nishihara orchard in Imabari City, Ehime Prefecture, which had about 30 different kinds of mikan. All of the mikan on this orchard were being sold only in Japan, so we would never have experienced them without going there in person.
A bright future of sustainable sensory delights
Over ten years, Givaudan’s TasteTrek® Citrus has been so much more than geographical journeys. They’ve been emotional and spiritual adventures on which we’ve met incredible people and seen enchanting parts of the world. And wherever we go next, we’ll keep bringing the essence of those places to the wider world.
Dawn, Product Manager for Citrus: “Ten years of TasteTrek® Citrus have played a key role in helping us deliver distinctive citrus flavours with stability and sustainability at their heart, reflecting regional flavour preferences as well as developing those that surprise with exotic or unexpected characteristics.”
The next time you trek back from the supermarket and marvel at a new flavour of orange, lemon, lime or pummelo flavoured drink, it might just be thanks to one of our TasteTrek® Citrus journeys from around the globe.