Mandarin (Citrus reticulata Blanco or Citrus nobilis Andrews) and orange (αβCitrus sinensis (L.)) Osbeck, were introduced to Europe by the Portuguese explorers in the 12th and the 15th century respectively. Since that time there was ever increasing popularity and demand for these fruits which lead to their wide cultivation in many countries of the world.
The name “Mandarin” was given to the C. reticulata by the Portuguese who brought it from China and named it to reflect the country of origin. The history of the name “Orange” is quite curious. In some European languages, the word “Appelsin” (Chinese apple), is used to designate orange. while the word “orange” itself is traceable through Arabic “Naranj” to Sanskrit “Naranga”, the Arabs themselves use the word “Burtukhal” (Portugal) which testifies to the contribution of the Portuguese to the introduction and distribution of citrus in the Western world.
In today’s food and beverage market, the citrus flavored products are highly popular. The aroma elements from the citrus fruits--cold-pressed and distilled oils, folded and deterpenated oils, essences and extracts, are widely used in the creation of natural flavors. The commercial importance of these products lead to extensive scientific study resulting in a broad knowledge base of their chemical composition.