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''Speeches of Mr. Sorgun Ozbalci in Foodnews
Dried Fruit and Nuts Conference-2003 Amsterdam''
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''Consumption and Product Trends in Turkey - Dried Fruits and Nuts''
Click here to read more for Mr. Ozbalci's speech in DFN 2004 Conference
        History Of Fig
The cultivated fig (Ficus carica) probably originated in southwestern Asia and became a very popular fruit throughout Turkey, Persia, Arabia, and the Mediterranean region when civilizations and empires were just being born. Egyptians depicted figs in pictographs and hieroglyphics, and the writings of the Greeks and Jews made many references to the plant. Figs are edible either fresh or dry, and, like dates, the dried fig became an important staple in the diets of people on the move or living in dry areas, where fresh fruits were unattainable. Figs are high in calories, but the milky latex in the plant is a laxative.

Figs, whose story starts with “Adam and Eve”, are accepted as sacred fruit and commonly consumed during Christmas all over the world. There are traces that figs were cultivated in their motherland Anatolia in the years of 3000-2000 B.C. and they were spread through the Mediterranean from Anatolia within time.

Cultivated figs grow on small trees with three-lobed, deciduous leaves. What is here called a fruit is actually a "multiple fruit," which is an entire inflorescence of flowers. The vase-shaped multiple fruit of a fig is sometimes called a syconium. The syconium evolved from a primitive form that looked like a flat plate crowded with small flowers. Through evolution the plate arched upward into a ball. Therefore, the flowers are located on the inside, and there is a small hole (ostiole) at the top that is hidden by some scales, but is important as the entrance for the pollinator. Most species of figs in the world (the genus Ficus has more than 600 species) are monoecious and have male and female flowers within a single syconium. This is the condition also of the "caprifig," the wild goat fig (also Ficus carica) of southeastern Europe and southwestern Asia. The charming but puzzling feature of three other types of cultivated figs (Common, Smyrna, and San Pedro) is that no male flowers are ever produced.

  Aso Gida Sanayi Ticaret ve Paz. Ithalat Ihracat Ltd. Sti.// Email : aso@asofood.com