It’s funny that let’s associate the green color to fruits that are still immature, as can happen with the banana, with the apricot or with the peach. The problem is when we carry this association to certain fruits such as citrus fruits, especially tangerines and oranges, when we see them in the grocery store.
However, even though we associate the green color with immaturity of a product, the reality is that tangerines and oranges that have a greenish tone —and are in the greengrocers— can be perfectly eaten.
Unfortunately, it is common for us to suffer a certain reluctance to pick this type of citrusregardless of whether they are tangerines or oranges, thinking that it is a reliable indicator to know if they are ripe or not.
It is true that it is a technique that works with fruits such as those mentioned above or, as also happens with strawberries, with which tangerines and oranges share winter seasonalthough the reasons of the latter for turning green are different.
Besides, It should not be confused with the verdeo of the potato either.which is dangerous for health and that is why we recommend throwing them away if they start to turn green, as they can be toxic.
Those that are not toxic are tangerines or orangesas explained Miguel A. LuruenaPhD in Food Science and Technology, in a thread of Twitterso that we have no qualms about buying these mandarins.
“Inside they can be ripe and outside show that green color, which is due to chlorophyll“, he explained and also giving the reasons why it is not normal for us to see green tangerines or oranges in the supermarket or in the fruit shop.
“Once collected, citrus fruits are placed in chambers where they are kept under controlled conditions to make the chlorophyll oxidize and manifest the orange pigments that we associate with these fruits,” he commented.
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To do this, “if control relative humidity, temperature, carbon dioxide concentration and the concentration of ethylene (a plant hormone naturally produced by fruits that participates in ripening)”, he added.
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