Field of Science

Sumo Citrus - Non-GMO?

A new Citrus fruit has appeared in markets, and TPP is not certain how "new" it actually is, although the name Sumo is certainly novel.  Now TPP has looked into similar fruits (Here, here, and here) some time ago, and he is just not certain how novel as in new this fruit is.  TPP's initial reaction is that this is just a tangelo, a hybrid between a tangerine and an orange.  They also have the protrusion at the stem end of the fruit and they also have a pretty easily removed outer fruit wall.  At least one internet entry says that the sumo  is a hybrid between a mandarin and a naval orange.  But whereas mandarins are smallish this is a big fruit, and mandarins are also called "oranges", especially when they come peeled and as de-membraned sections in little cans.  So the sumo would seems to make it very similar to a tangelo, except bigger (thus the appellation suggesting large size?).  Interestingly enough the label clearly states that this is non-GMO, but how can you say that a hybrid organism is not a genetically modified organism?  Hybridization in the genus Citrus is pretty common way to genetically modify the offspring, thus the seedless clementine.  Equally stupid is the fact that the fruit has no glutin.  Now glutin is a protein found only in the endosperm of certain cereal grains and so the list of plants whose fruits lack glutin is quite long.  Seems like this is just a marketing ploy for a rather largish tangelo.  Enjoy.  

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