Sapodilla The chicle tree is a tropical American evergreen tree (Manilkara zapota synonym Achras zapota of the family Sapotaceae, the sapodilla family) with hard reddish wood, a latex that yields chicle, and a rough-skinned brownish fruit with sweet flesh.
It is native to southern Mexico and Central America. The word chicle comes from the Nahuatl word for chewing gum, tziktli ("sticky stuff"), which also refers to the tree's sap. The sap of the chicle tree is a white latex with a pungent odor, called chicle or zapota, which was once the main ingredient in chewing gum. Native to southern Mexico and Central America.
The history of chicle and the modern chewing gum is complicated and does not involve only this particular species, but also others related to it (in Spanish: chicozapote, sapodilla, Madura, dracontomelon). Chicle was first used as a chewing gum by the Olmec culture at least as early as 3600 BC. Mayan archeological sites have yielded potsherds chewed to remove the latex sap, leaving a telltale bead around the mouth.
It was first imported into northern Belize from southern Mexico by a Scottish-born American businessman named Samuel Zemurray, who started a company called "the Cuyamel Fruit Company" to export the chicle. During World War II, the Japanese controlled the supply of natural rubber and it became crucial for the US military to find a replacement. Chicle was used as a substitute in products such as chewing gum, chico cookies, and Riot Gum. The word is from the Nahuatl word for the gum, tziktli ("sticky stuff"), which ultimately derives from the verb tziktia ("to make sticky"). It was first introduced to the US as an alternative to chewing gum in 1871. In 1898, the American Chicle Company was created from the merger of 9 gum companies. In 1912, the United States Government created a monopoly on chicle after discovering that William Semple had patented a process for creating synthetic rubber from chicle during research funded by Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company.
Global sapodilla production
Sapodilla is a tropical fruit that is native to Central America. The sapodilla tree can grow up to 30 meters (98 feet) in height and the fruit can weigh up to 1 kilogram (2.2 pounds). Sapodilla is a popular fruit in many tropical countries and is often eaten fresh or made into juice or jam. The sapodilla fruit has brown or black skin and white, sweet flesh. The fruit is rich in vitamins and minerals and has a high fiber content. Sapodilla is believed to have many health benefits, including the ability to improve digestion, aid in weight loss, and boost the immune system.
The sapodilla fruit is globally produced in tropical and subtropical climates. The fruit is sweet and fragrant, with a texture that is similar to a pear. The sapodilla fruit is a good source of dietary fiber, vitamin C, and potassium.
The sapodilla tree is native to Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua. However, the fruit is now grown in many other tropical countries, including India, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Vietnam, and the Philippines. Sapodilla trees require a hot, humid climate and well-drained soil. The trees are typically propagated from seed, although they can also be propagated from cuttings. Sapodilla trees begin to bear fruit after 3-5 years and can produce up to 200 fruits per season.
The sapodilla fruit has been used in traditional medicine for centuries. The fruit is believed to have laxative, diuretic, and anti-inflammatory properties. Sapodilla is also thought to boost the immune system and help protect against various diseases. Some traditional medicines use sapodilla to treat diarrhea, dysentery, and ulcers.