Kumquat takes its name from the homonymous plant belonging to the Rutaceae family. The fruit resembles a small elongated mandarin, extremely pleasing to the eye, a characteristic that has made this tree a very popular ornamental plant. The acidulous flavor of the pulp is pleasantly combined with that of the thick, sweet and aromatic peel. It can be used in slices in fruit salads, or used for the production of juices, candied fruit and jams.
Kumquat originally came from China, where it has been widespread since at least the 12th century as evidenced by literary sources. Furthermore, it has long been cultivated in Japan. The plant was introduced in Europe in 1846 by Robert Fortune, collector of the London Horticultural Society. Today it is cultivated in China, Korea, Japan, warm areas of Mediterranean Europe.