Plum is a fruit which belongs to the genus-Prunus and can be clustered along with other fruits such as peaches, cherries, and apricots in the rose family. The prime characteristics which differentiate all these fruits into different subgenera are the orientation of shoots, leaves, and flowers. The taxonomists have approximated the number of existing species of plum to be between 19 and 40. From this diversity, only two species, namely the European plum (Prunus domestica) and the Japanese plum or Japanese apricot (Prunus mume) are of worldwide commercial significance and have gained major popularity amongst people. Prior to when plums started to be consumed as a fruit, they were used for medicinal purposes in ancient China. When it comes to making an extract or a concentrated juice out of plums, the dried Japanese plums which also goes by the name of Umeboshi or when translated into English: Japanese salted plums or pickled plums. The Umeboshi plums are made by the lactic fermentation process using Japanese plums, shiso leaves, and sea salt. Although on the backdrop of exceeding demand of the extract, the companies may or may not use artificial dyes or preservatives.
The plum extract has gained widespread popularity as a product itself amongst consumers as well as an ingredient among the manufacturers thereby making it a successful B2B and B2C product. The plum extract market can be segmented on the basis of application, form, product type and distribution channels. On the basis of application, the plum extract market can be segmented into culinary, nutraceuticals, foods & beverages, cosmetics as well as confectionary. On the basis of form, the plum extract market can be segmented into liquid, paste, powder as well as solid. On the basis of the product type, the plum extract market can be segmented into natural, organic as well as artificial. On the basis of distribution channels, the plum extract market can be segmented into online retailing, specialty stores, hypermarkets/supermarkets and convenience stores.
The plum extract is a reservoir of natural minerals such as sodium, magnesium, iron, phosphorous and potassium owing to its support in dealing with a vast number of issues such as obesity, diabetes, Osteoporosis, constipation, Alcohol poisoning, age-related cognitive impairment, atherosclerosis, cancer, hypercholesterolemia, hyperlipidemia, weight loss, anemia, anxiety, influenza, muscular degeneration and others.
The plum extract market is gaining widespread recognition owing not only to its medicinal properties but also of its culinary application such as using the plum extract as dressings, dips, and marinades. The salty and sour properties of Umeboshi plum extract make it an excellent accompaniment to rice dishes. Furthermore, vinegar can also be made from the plum extract owing to the presence of a considerable amount of citric acid in it. The plum extract can also be added to jams, puddings and jellies. The plum extract is also visible to be employed in the preparation of alcoholic beverages. Moreover, the plum extract concentrate works deliciously well as a filling for candies and confectionery products.
The leading countries in terms of the manufacture and export of plum extract are the ones belonging to Europe viz. Spain, France, Italy followed by the Asian countries like China, Korea, Japan, Hong Kong and others. Significant production of the plum extract is noticeable in countries like Australia, Germany, United States of America as well as Netherlands.
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