▲ A snow-capped Mt. Halla with gamgyul, or tangerine, in the foreground. The tangerine are harvested in late-autumn and winter. Photo courtesySeogwipo World Citrus Pre-Expo 2013
The Seogwipo World Citrus Pre-Expo 2013, held for 10 days from Nov. 22 to Dec. 1, 2013 will be the largest citrus event in the world. The event will include exhibitions, business opportunities and academic events alongside citrus organizations, businesses and farmers from around the world.
Seogwipo is the home of citrus. The white citrus blossoms in the spring and the yellow citrus blossoms in the autumn, covering the beautiful city. Citrus is a valuable fruit from the flesh to the peel. It is rich in medicinal vitamins to combat colds, has anticancer properties and is even used for perfumes. It is a remarkable fruit.
The organizers invite you all to the foremost international expo of the citrus industry and hope you have a golden experience enjoying the autumnal colors of citrus fruits.
It is estimated that the KORUS FTA led to 1,5 trillion of damage to the Korean citrus industry and due to climate change, citrus cultivation is moving north. This could further damage the Jeju citrus industry.
2013 was targeted as the year to export Jeju citrus to other countries meaning infrastructure and competitiveness must be strengthened. There is a market need for high value products and the income of citrus farms on the island must be diversified.
The value of the Jeju citrus industry has three main pillars
Identify additional business programs such as cosmetics and confectionary.
Hold historical, cultural and artistic exhibitions, and citrus programs based on food culture.
Conserve the environment through preservation of farmlands, flood control, acclimatization and biodiversity.
- To promote the local economy
- To develop the overseas market
- To develop Jeju as a "Citrus City'
2013-14 Introduction: Develop the world citrus expo
2015-16 Settlement: Emerge as a world-class citrus city
2017-19 Stabilization: Grow into a world-class citrus business city
2020 Maturation: Completion of international citrus city
The origins of Jeju citrus
The first record of citrus relating to Jeju is 70 A.D in the Nihon Shoki, or The Chronicles of Japan, when specimens were taken from Tokoyonokuni, a land of legend. on the orders of Emperor Suinin. Some scholars believe Tokoyonokuni was Jeju Island.
▲Jeju’s citrus history can be found in many historical documents, such as the one above
The ancient Jeju kingdom of Tamna is then recorded in Goryeo annals as sending citrus to the king in 476 and then in 925, the reign of King Taejo, “special products were offered to the King.” According to the History of the Goryeo Dynasty, in 1052 the quantity of citrus fruits was significantly increased during the reign of King Munjong. This indicates that citrus was offered regularly as a form of tax over long periods of time.
As we enter the Joseon Dynasty (1392-1897) records show that in the first year of King Taejo’s reign, citrus was being sent from Jeju. In 1426, the reign of King Sejong, the Ministry of Taxation ordered the planting of Chinese citrus along the south coast and the term "gamgyul” appears in an inspector’s letter in Jeju in 1456, the reign of King Sejo. The letter states, “Citrus is quite important for holding ancestral rites ... and treating guests.”
The letter is valuable as it lists varieties of citrus and reproduction and management techniques. The fruit was con-sidered precious for medicinal uses, food, and ancestral rites. The royal household thus maintained a fruit tax and state orchard system to satisfy need, as administered by the state office known as Dongsansaek in the Goryeo Dynasty and Sangrimwon in the Joseon Dynasty.
It wasn’t until Japanese rule that new varieties of citrus were brought to Jeju and the earlier varieties were made obsolete by the higher quality imports. The variety still cultivated today was introduced quite recently when politician Park Yeong-hyo (1861-1939) planted a Japanese citrus tree at an orchard in Gunamcheon, Jeju, where he stayed temporarily.
Then in 1902, Father Esmile J. Taque from France came to Jeju and planted 15 citrus trees in 1911, the beginning of widespread citrus cultivation. A single tree planted at the Catholic Welfare Monastery in Seohong-dong, Seogwipo, is known as the oldest specimen remaining today. In 1913 further seedlings were added by a Japanese man and this plantation remains.
The agrarian committee under Japanese rule played a leading role in promoting citrus cultivation by distributing seeds from Japan and the higher quality and yielding fruit lowered the price of the Jeju varieties already cultivated, leading to their phasing out. The citrus cultivated in Jeju today are mostly Citrus unshiu, also known as satsuma and tangerine.
A snow-capped Mt. Halla with gamgyul, or tangerine, in the foreground. The tangerine are harvested in late autumn and winter. Photo courtesySeogwipo World Citrus Pre-Expo 2013
[This is an advertorial for The Seogwipo World Citrus Pre-Expo 2013]
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