Tangerine harvest is sweet treat for citizens
Succulent tangerines grown on Chongming Island are now in season and available in the city's downtown, Shanghai's greenery authorities said on Saturday.
The tangerines will be sold in 10 downtown parks – Luxun Park, Zhongshan Park, Changfeng Park, Changshou Park, Yangpu Park, Zhabei Park, Century Park, Gongqing Forest Park, Shanghai Botanical Garden and Jinqiao Park – over the next 21 days.
The juicy tangerines are delivered to these parks directly from agriculture cooperatives and orchards on Chongming to ensure their freshness, according to the Shanghai Forestry Station.
Tangerine orchards occupy 51,600 mu (3,440 hectares) in Shanghai, with the majority in the towns of Changxing and Lvhua and Hengsha Village on Chongming Island, according to the station. They are also grown in the Pudong New Area as well as suburban Jinshan and Fengxian districts.
The yield is estimated at about 60,000 tons this year, about the same as last year.
The recent sunny weather and temperature differences between day and night raised sugar levels, and the fruit will be much sweeter this year, the station said.
"The period between early November and early December is the best time to taste Shanghai's local-grown tangerines," said Yang Chufeng, director of the station.
Sales of Chongming tangerines were once poor due to the island district's distance from downtown and poor transport links. That was before the Changjiang Tunnel-Bridge opened in 2009. The difficulty in getting the fruit to market also prompted city authorities, several years ago, to set up free stalls for farmers in downtown parks.
"These parks are a platform to promote our local-grown fruits, and we also invite residents to visit the city's suburbs in autumn to pick tangerines, taste hairy crabs and enjoy the joy of harvest," said Yang.