What is lucuma?

It is the fruit of the lúcumo tree, it is native to the Andean area and grows in temperate valleys on the coast and mountains of Peru. The lúcumo is a tree species, from the Sapotaceae family and from the Lucuma genus.

Lucuma has always stood out for its high nutritional level and is one of those that is exported from Peru to more than 40 countries. It is considered one of the 10 best fruits on the planet, according to the TasteAtlas publication.

It is considered a superfood “The gold of the Incas”. There are two varieties for edible production; Lucuma silk and Lucuma palo.

It is an extraordinary natural energizer, providing fiber, potassium, vitamin B3 and carotenoids. It provides vitality to carry out daily activities normally, and is rich in niacin (vitamin B3). Thanks to the latter, it stimulates the proper functioning of the nervous system.

This fruit contains calcium, protein, zinc, iron, phosphorus and beta-carotene.

Lucuma is an indigenous plant species from Peru. Whole or split fruit specimens, as well as seeds and cotyledons of this plant, are among the most commonly found plant remains in archaeological sites on the Peruvian coast, indicating that lucuma was an important part of the pre-Columbian diet. [Romero, 1975]. Remains of fruits and seeds were found in Pachacámac, Cahuachi and Huaca del Loro, in the Nazca valley; The fruit often appears in pre-Columbian ceramics, mainly in the Moche, Nazca and Paracas cultures [Tosi, 1960]. It was described by the first chroniclers: "There is another coarse fruit that the Indians call rucma and the Spanish call lucuma, they are the size and size of oranges and have, in the pith, a pit similar to the chestnut in color of the peel and in the white color of the pith, although it is bitter and not to be eaten. Its use was very old and so appreciated that there were legends about this plant, such as those told by the Huarochirí Indians [Valcárcel, 1985]. It is also known as lucuma, locma, lucma, pucuna caspi, oroco, cumala, rucma [Brack A. 1999]. It grows in inter-Andean valleys such as Ayacucho, Huanta, Cuzco, Urubamba Valley, Cajamarca, Junín. It extends to Ecuador and Chile. [Palacios, 1997]. The valleys of Cañete, Huaral, Huacho and Chincha are currently producing the best quality lucuma in Peru, using appropriate technology to produce high quality fruits for export purposes. [].

VARIETIES In our country, two types of lucuma are distinguished: “Lucuma de Seda” and “Lucuma de Palo”. The lucuma fruits that have a soft texture when ripe are called Silk Lucuma. Otherwise, the fruits are called Lucuma de Palo. Both types of fruit can appear on the same tree, in case of sudden variations in the climate, especially with temperature. Lucuma de Seda has a floury pulp, intense yellow in color, soft to the palate and sweet, while Lucuma de Palo has hard pulp, not appropriate for fresh consumption [].


Back to blog

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.