The Fruit Hunters: A Story of Nature, Adventure, Commerce and Obsession

Adam Leith Gollner

The Fruit Hunters: A Story of Nature, Adventure, Commerce and Obsession

Looking beyond the familiar fruits Adam Gollner enters the underworld of inaccessible, obscure, even forbidden fruits. In this Willy Wonka-like world of mangos that taste like pina colados, ice cream beans, peanut butter fruits and the miracle fruit that makes sour taste sweet we meet a cast of bizarre characters - fruitarians who believe that a fruit diet is instrumental in achieving enlightenment, fruit smugglers, obsessed horticulturalists and the fanatical fruit detective who has turned himself orange because he has eaten so many apricots. Revealing the extraordinary universe of fruit - from the jungles of Borneo to the forests of Bali and vast fruit warehouses in New York - Gollner explains the scientific, economic and aesthetic reasons why we eat particular fruits. Fruit has held as powerful a sway over man as gold or myrrh. Fruit has led nations into war, inspired religious worship and fuelled dictatorships. It has been the motive behind exploration. Although nature contains hundreds of thousands of varieties of exotic fruits, only a few dozen varieties are available in supermarkets. Gollner describes the political and economic interests behind the mass-produced fruits we all eat. Discover that there is more to the world of fruit than the bland shelves of a supermarket, travel the world with Adam Gollner in search of fruits few have ever heard of (and even fewer have actually tasted). 3.7 out of 5 based on 3 reviews
The Fruit Hunters: A Story of Nature, Adventure, Commerce and Obsession

Omniscore:

Classification Non-fiction
Genre Food & Drink
Format Hardback
Pages 288
RRP £18.99
Date of Publication May 2009
ISBN 978-0285638488
Publisher Souvenir Press
 

Looking beyond the familiar fruits Adam Gollner enters the underworld of inaccessible, obscure, even forbidden fruits. In this Willy Wonka-like world of mangos that taste like pina colados, ice cream beans, peanut butter fruits and the miracle fruit that makes sour taste sweet we meet a cast of bizarre characters - fruitarians who believe that a fruit diet is instrumental in achieving enlightenment, fruit smugglers, obsessed horticulturalists and the fanatical fruit detective who has turned himself orange because he has eaten so many apricots. Revealing the extraordinary universe of fruit - from the jungles of Borneo to the forests of Bali and vast fruit warehouses in New York - Gollner explains the scientific, economic and aesthetic reasons why we eat particular fruits. Fruit has held as powerful a sway over man as gold or myrrh. Fruit has led nations into war, inspired religious worship and fuelled dictatorships. It has been the motive behind exploration. Although nature contains hundreds of thousands of varieties of exotic fruits, only a few dozen varieties are available in supermarkets. Gollner describes the political and economic interests behind the mass-produced fruits we all eat. Discover that there is more to the world of fruit than the bland shelves of a supermarket, travel the world with Adam Gollner in search of fruits few have ever heard of (and even fewer have actually tasted).

Reviews

The New York Times

Mary Roach

I opened this book, Gollner’s first, expecting the standard nutmeat of competent nonfiction and found instead something lustrous and exhilarating. Gollner’s is not the sort of talent one can develop. It is genetic, physical — an exquisite sensitivity of tongue, nose and eye.

01/06/2008

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The Daily Telegraph

Helen Brown

Although the book sometimes feels jumbled, Gollner’s passion for his subject bursts through in every line. The zingy facts just keep coming... I am looking forward to telling the next person who offers me apple pie that, in the middle ages, it was considered the height of eroticism for a woman to peel an apple and coddle it in her armpit until fully infused with her body odour before presenting it to a lover.

22/05/2009

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The Financial Times

Jonathan Birchall

A celebration of all fruit everywhere may be laudable, but it is an ambitious task... In spite of an attempt to use personal narrative and travels to give some shape to the sprawling tendrils of the work, Gollner succumbs rapidly to the cornucopia before him, and is unable to resist the urge to include a taste of everything he encountered. So it is not surprising that his best chapter is where he tells of his trip to find and taste just one fruit – the coco de mer, found only in the Seychelles.

25/05/2009

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