Florida Navel Oranges
Large or small - these beautiful navels kick off the orange season with an explosion of sweet juicy flavor. Universally considered the best oranges for eating out-of-hand, seedless Navels have easy-to-peel rinds, juicy yet firm pulp, and an irresistibly pure, sweet orange flavor. Navel orange segments are healthy and fun kid foods for snacks and lunches, that pack and travel well. Peel the orange, then gently separate the fruit along the natural divisions. All Navel oranges have an opening at the blossom end of the fruit that resembles a belly button – hence the name, Navel.
Navel Orange Facts
A navel orange is a special type of orange which has a little surprise inside once it is peeled: a partially formed undeveloped fruit like a conjoined twin, located at the blossom end of the fruit. From the outside, the blossom end is reminiscent of a human navel, leading to the common name of "navel orange."
This orange varietal is the result of a single mutation which occurred on a plantation in Brazil in 1820. The mutation led to the formation of a conjoined twin enclosed within the rind of a seedless orange, and it proved to be a hit, so people began cultivating it in other regions.
Because the navel orange is seedless, it can only be propagated through cuttings. Technically, every navel orange comes from the same orange tree; the Brazilian orange which generated a spontaneous mutation hundreds of years ago. Orange farmers take cuttings from their navel orange trees and graft them onto fresh stock periodically to ensure that their orchards stay healthy, and also for the purpose of expansion.
The flesh of a navel orange is sweet and naturally very juicy, making them among the most common and popular of orange varieties. The navel orange can be eaten out of hand, juiced, used in fruit salads, or turned into jams and preserves, depending on personal taste. And of course, the best Navels only come from Florida!