Navels still rule in California, with total navel acreage of 130,000 acres compared with 43,000 acres for clementines/mandarins. But the easy-peeling citrus is gaining traction.
As California clementine output has soared, U.S. imports of Spanish clementines have sagged, from $98 million in 2007 to $79 million in 2011. Other Southern Hemisphere clementine suppliers have fared better.
If the aging citrus relative grapefurit has struggled to define itself, the Cutie and other clementine brands have had all the breaks and buzz, with more apparently to come.