The kiwifruit is chock full of Vitamin C, in fact it contains several times more of it than citrus fruit. It has a quite sour taste, which is exactly why I love it. Some people peel the whole fruit before eating it, but that will leave you with extremely sticky hands and kiwi juice all over the place. Thus, my preferred method of eating kiwifruit is to cut them in half and extract the fruit flesh with a spoon. However, this can be difficult if the fruit is not yet completely ripe and thus still hard.

As other posters have pointed out, kiwifruit were originally called Chinese Gooseberry. What they have failed to point out is the reason for the name. Cast your mind back to the 1950's, the period when the New Zealand plant breeders got the first strains of fruit palatable to western tastes... ...one of the major features of the international climate was McCarthyism, it was a period when none of our international trading partners would touch a fruit with the word `Chinese' in it. So a new name was coined, Kiwifruit.

Unfortunately, the name was not trademarked, and soon other countries started growing Chinese Gooseberrys and calling them kiwifruit. So the cunning kiwis growing kiwis thought up a new brand name and remembered to trademark it. This trademark is Zespri.

Recently there have been a number of trips back to China to collect wild Chinese Gooseberry stock to increase the genetic diversity of the stock in New Zealand and raise the chances of interesting hybrids. Some of the recent successes include different colours of palatable Chinese Gooseberry, different shapes and larger size.

Kiwifruit grow on a vine, much like a grapevine, but the fruit hang individually not in clusters. Like grapes, commercial planting usually involves a root stock.

In a good year kiwifruit get down to 40cents per kilogram (that's about 15cents american) on the local market. This is for export rejects, which typically means that the fruit aren't aren't round but bi-lobed. Many locals eat the smoother skinned varieties skin and all.

Some of the many zespri websites are:
http://www.zespri-usa.com/
http://www.zespri.co.nz/
http://www.zespri.com.tw/
http://www.zespri.com/

The web site of HortResearch, who I believe breed the original commercially successful strains of kiwifruit is:
http://www.hortresearch.co.nz/hortcrops/kiwifruit/

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