The tangerine (
Citrus tangerina) is a group of orange-colored
citrus fruit consisting of hybrids of mandarin orange (Citrus
The name was first used for fruit coming from Tangier, Morocco,
described as a mandarin variety. Under the Tanaka classification
Citrus tangerina is considered a separate species. Under the
Swingle system, tangerines are considered to be a group of mandarin
(C. reticulata) varieties. Genetic study has shown tangerines to be
mandarin orange hybrids containing some pomelo DNA. Some differ
only in disease resistance. The term is currently applied to any
reddish-orange mandarin (and, in some jurisdictions,
mandarin-like hybrids, including some tangors).)
Tangerines are smaller and less rounded than common oranges. The taste
is considered less sour, as well as sweeter and stronger, than that of
an orange. A ripe tangerine is firm to slightly soft, heavy for its
size, and pebbly-skinned with no deep grooves, as
well as orange in color. The peel is very thin, with very little
bitter white mesocarp, which makes them usually easier to peel and
to split into segments. All of these traits are
shared by mandarins generally.
Peak tangerine season lasts from autumn to spring. Tangerines are most
commonly peeled and eaten out of hand. The fresh fruit is also used in
salads, desserts and main dishes. The peel is used fresh or dried as a
spice or zest for baking and drinks, and eaten coated in chocolate.
Fresh tangerine juice and frozen juice concentrate are commonly
available in the United States. The number of seeds in each segment
(carpel) varies greatly.
1 Nomenclature and varieties
5 External links
Nomenclature and varieties
See also: Mandarin varieties
Tangerines were first grown and cultivated as a distinct crop in the
Americas by a Major Atway in Palatka, Florida. Atway was said to
have imported them from
Morocco (capital Tangiers), which was the
origin of the name "Tangerine". Major Atway sold his groves to N. H.
Moragne in 1843, giving the Moragne tangerine the other part of its
The Moragne tangerine produced a seedling which became one of the
oldest and most popular American varieties, the Dancy tangerine
(zipper-skin tangerine, kid-glove orange). Genetic analysis has
shown the parents of the Dancy to have been two mandarin orange
hybrids each with a small pomelo contribution, a
orange and a second unidentified mandarin. The Dancy is no longer
widely commercially grown; it is too delicate to handle and ship well,
it is susceptible to
Alternaria fungus, and it bears more heavily in
alternate years. Dancys are still grown for personal
consumption, and many hybrids of the Dancy are grown commercially.
Until the 1970s, the Dancy was the most widely grown tangerine in the
US; the popularity of the fruit led to the term "tangerine" being
broadly applied as a marketing name.
Florida classifies tangerine-like
hybrid fruits as tangerines for the purposes of sale and
regulation; this classification is widely used but regarded as
technically inaccurate in the industry. Among the most important
tangerine hybrids of
Florida are murcotts, a late-fruiting type of
tangor marketed as "honey tangerine" and Sunbursts (an
early-fruiting complex tangerine-orange-grapefruit hybrid). The
fallglo, also a three-way hybrid (5/8 tangerine, 1/4 orange and 1/8
grapefruit) is also grown.
A botanical illustration of a Manurco tangerine, painted by Royal
Charles Steadman in January, 1926.
A Murcott, likely a tangerine hybrid
Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)
223 kJ (53 kcal)
Vitamin A equiv.
Pantothenic acid (B5)
Link to USDA Database entry
μg = micrograms • mg = milligrams
IU = International units
Percentages are roughly approximated using US recommendations for
Source: USDA Nutrient Database
Tangerines contain 85% water, 13% carbohydrates, and negligible
amounts of fat and protein (table). Among micronutrients, only vitamin
C is in significant content (32% of the Daily Value) in a 100 gram
reference serving, with all other nutrients in low amounts.
According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the word "tangerine" was
originally an adjective meaning "Of or pertaining to, or native of
Tangier, a seaport in Morocco, on the Strait of Gibraltar" and "a
native of Tangier." The OED cites this usage from Addison's The Tatler
in 1710 with similar uses from the 1800s. The adjective was applied to
the fruit, once known scientifically as "
Citrus nobilis var.
tangeriana" which grew in the region of Tangiers. This usage appears
in the 1800s
Citrus tangerina Yu.Tanaka — The Plant List".
^ "Home : Oxford English Dictionary". oed.com.
^ "New universal mitochondrial PCR markers reveal new information on
maternal citrus phylogeny". Tree Genetics. 7: 49–61.
^ a b Wu, Guohong Albert; Terol, Javier; Ibanez, Victoria;
López-García, Antonio; Pérez-Román, Estela; Borredá, Carles;
Domingo, Concha; Tadeo, Francisco R; Carbonell-Caballero, Jose;
Alonso, Roberto; Curk, Franck; Du, Dongliang; Ollitrault, Patrick;
Roose, Mikeal L. Roose; Dopazo, Joaquin; Gmitter Jr, Frederick G.;
Rokhsar, Daniel; Talon, Manuel (2018). "Genomics of the origin and
evolution of Citrus". Nature. 554: 311–316.
doi:10.1038/nature25447. and Supplement
^ G Albert Wu; et al. "Sequencing of diverse mandarin, pomelo and
orange genomes reveals complex history of admixture during citrus
domestication". Nature Biotechnology. 32: 656–662.
doi:10.1038/nbt.2906. PMC 4113729 . PMID 24908277.
^ Li, Xiaomeng; Xie, Rangjin; Lu, Zhenhua; Zhou, Zhiqin (2010). "The
Origin of Cultivated
Citrus as Inferred from Internal Transcribed
Spacer and Chloroplast DNA Sequence and Amplified Fragment Length
Polymorphism Fingerprints". Journal of the American Society for
Horticultural Science. 135: 341–350.
^ a b Commernet, 2011. "20-13.0061. Sunburst Tangerines;
Classification and Standards, 20-13. Market Classification, Maturity
Standards And Processing Or Packing Restrictions For Hybrids, D20.
Departmental, 20. Department of Citrus,
Florida Administrative Code".
State of Florida. Retrieved 14 May 2015.
^ a b Larry K. Jackson & Stephen H. Futch. "HS178/CH073: Robinson
Tangerine". Retrieved 14 May 2015.
^ Pittman & Davis (1999-02-22). "Pittman & Davis – Premium
Fruit Gifts – Why Are Tangerines So Tangy?".
Pittmandavis.com. Retrieved 2012-11-17.
^ David Karp (2011-01-28). "Market Watch: The wild and elusive Dancy".
LA Times. Retrieved 2015-07-19.
^ H. Harold Hume (1913).
Citrus Fruits and Their Culture. O. Judd
Company. p. 101.
^ a b http://www.citrusvariety.ucr.edu/citrus/dancy.html
^ Larry K. Jackson & Stephen H. Futch. "HS169/CH074: Dancy
^ "Satsuma cultivars: The best and the worst". AL.com. Retrieved 14
^ "HS174/CH078: Murcott (Honey Tangerine)". Edis.ifas.ufl.edu.
^ "HS168/CH079: Sunburst Tangerine". Edis.ifas.ufl.edu. Retrieved
^ Larry K. Jackson & Stephen H. Futch. "HS173/CH075: Fallglo
Tangerine". Retrieved 14 May 2015.
^ . See the Oxford English Dictionary, 2nd edition, 1989.
Data related to
Citrus tangerina at Wikispecies
Tangerine at Wikibook Cookbooks
Media related to Tangerines at Wikimedia Commons
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University of California
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University of California, Riverside
Citrus Variety Collection
Plant List: kew-2724391