Valencia, land of oranges! A magnificent fruit that we enjoy in season, from December to May, full of fiber, vitamins and natural sweetness. We use it to make our Frutifresh gourmet orange preparation, a delicious fresh-cut product that can be consumed as a dessert, snack or as an ingredient in a pastry recipe, for example.

And do you know what the secret is that it is so tasty? An exceptional raw material that joins our care and attention at the time of peeling, cutting and preparing the syrup where we will preserve them longer. And in this article we want you to put a face to the farmer who is responsible for giving us such high quality oranges. This is Vicent Alcayde, from Naranjas María Teresa.

Vicent is an Agronomist Engineer and is the third generation dedicated to the cultivation of orange trees. It has about 10 hectares of orange trees in l’Horta Nord de Valencia. The oranges that he brings us come from the orchards that he has in Vinalesa, just 7 kilometers from our production facilities. It is therefore a product of proximity. This proximity to the origin allows us to, in less than 24 hours after harvesting the oranges in the field, we have them processed in the plant. So the fruit is packed fresh, with all its aromas and flavors.

Sharing a working philosophy with our product suppliers is of paramount importance to us. Respect for the land, the crops and the product is essential, and in this sense, Peris and Alcayde play in the same league.

Vicent explains: “Normally from Vicente Peris they ask me for a quantity of kilos of oranges that varies according to the volume of orders they have. And I take them just those kilos. After a few days they give me another one and so I provide service based on their specific needs. What does that tell you? That they only order what they are going to process, so the fruit is always fresh, it doesn’t accumulate in cold storage for weeks, and that’s how fresh it gets to the consumer”.

Oranges of proximity

Oranges of proximity

Beneficial insects to combat pests

This a la carte service is something that Vicent facilitates for us and is just one aspect of the many that we like about how he works in the field. Since around the year 2000 its orange trees have been cultivated according to the integrated production system, a middle way between conventional production (where, among other practices, phytosanitary products or chemical fertilizers and nutrients are used without a clear sense) and organic production. After 21 years there has been an evolution and today it is closer to organic production than ever.

The maintenance of a vegetation cover in the fields is one of the respectful practices that Vicent carries out and that we at Peris value highly. Weed emergence is controlled by mechanical mowing, no herbicides. This system always maintains a green layer, mostly grasses, which prevent other tougher grasses from growing. These grasses are a refuge for phytoseiids that feed on their pollen and, in turn, are predators of the spider mite, a very common pest in orange trees, especially in mandarin trees. Another common pest in orange trees is the red louse, which is controlled with pheromone traps of sexual confusion, thus avoiding the use of pesticides. So it is not necessary to use phytosanitary products because pests are fought in a very natural way.

Fertilizer control is also important, and Vicent incorporates only what the plant needs based on its size and production, fractioning its contribution. ” All this practice generates a balance in the field, benefiting biodiversity and avoiding the excess of nitrogen fertilizers that end up filtering into the subsoil to the aquifers and cause nitrate contamination,” says Alcayde, who adds the importance of zero waste in food. “With conventional agriculture, residues of the chemicals used can remain in the fruit, below the MRL (Maximum Residual Limit), almost imperceptible, but I prefer that there is no residue at all in my oranges, that there is no such possibility, what is called Zero Residue, because what I consider to be good for me I also want for others.”

The best orange gives rise to the best gourmet orange preparation

These sustainable practices are unquestionably better for the fields and for the environment, and also for the oranges, of course. “The ones we grow ourselves don’t get very big, but it’s not something that matters to us, because being smaller they have a higher concentration of flavors, sugars, aromas… And this is something that customers who buy from our Naranjas María Teresa online store perceive and tell us,” Vicent tells us.

Orange, pineapple and fruit mix, sliced and packaged

Orange, pineapple and fruit mix, sliced and packaged

In Vicente Peris we also value it, because we know that our products must have the best raw material. But not only that, because in addition to the quality of the fruit we use, our gourmet orange preparation is totally respectful with that raw material. We do not subject freshly cut fruit to sudden and unnecessary temperature variations, and thanks to our work, we can extend the life of the fruit, keeping its nutritional qualities intact.
we can extend the life of the fruit, keeping its nutritional qualities intact.
If you have already tasted it, you will know that. If you have not yet had the opportunity, you can find this and other products of the same range prepared with pineapple, or combined with different fruits in Alcampo supermarkets. You can also ask for them in your usual supermarket or greengrocer’s shop.