Pistachio is a tree nut. It belongs to the Anacardiaceae family, of the genus: Pistacia. It is a medium-sized plant. The Pista fruit, in fact, is a drupe (fruit with a large, central located single seed). The seed kernel that’s eaten is known as “pistachio.”
The plant’s broad, bushy, deciduous tree is believed to have originated in the mountain ranges of West-Asia and Turkey region (Anatolia).
The mature fruit features hard, an off-white color shell. Opened at its seams, it exposes a light green, oblong shape kernel inside. A pistachio kernel measures about 2 cm in length and 1 cm width and weighs about 0.7-1 gm
Pistachio Harvesting Season:
Every season, the tree bears heavy clusters of fruits which appear somewhat like that of a grape bunch. During December through February, the plants are dormant.
Then as the warmer weather appears in late March, the plants start to bloom. As the April wind arrives, the male would then pollinate the female. Following this, in the Mid of May, the shell of the nut will be fully formed. Towards the end of June, the seed inside the shell already starts to expand rapidly allowing the seed to fill the shell by early August. Finally, early September, the nuts which are splitting at the seams are ready to be harvested.
DEC-JAN Dormant plant
MAY Shell Development
JUNE - AUG Seed Expansion
The process of harvesting pistachios includes
Picking the fruits from the trees
Separating the outer hull from the hard shell and washing by machines
Dry it in the sun
Separate cracked nuts from closed nuts
Sorting the nuts
Packing the nuts
The Pistachio undergoes a healthy processing condition, which involves:
Dehullying Drying Sorting Packing
All these are done in a way that the nuts that are picked today are processed the same day. This makes them safer and healthier to consume as the risk of aflatoxin contamination is highly reduced. This was verified by the EU representatives. To add on, our selected pistachios are grown without hormonal materials or genetic manipulation applied to them.
The Turkish pistachio kernel (Antep Fıstığı) is more delicious than other types of pistachios in the world and it has great in level of quality due to the perfect climate of Turkey.This product is widely known around the world and has found its market in most countries.Naming of this product are often based on the types of Turkish pistachios, such as ANTEP and SİİRT.
Pistachio Kernel is obtained from both close shell and naturally open pistachio nut but vary in price. Naturally open pistachio’s kernels are more expensive because of the time-consuming and costly process. We also can offer all kinds of Pistachio Kernels from green to ripe.
Types of Kernels:
- Kal Kernel with skin (raw and early picked)
- Green Peeled Pistachio Kernel (GPPK)
This type of pistachio is thick with very opened mouth
Size : 18/20, 20/22, 24/26
Jumbo pistachio has the biggest farms and it’s the most popular type of pistachio.
This type of pistachios are long and are the exclusive type among all pistachios.
Size: 20/22, 22/24, 24/26, 26/28.
Extra Size: 22/24, 24/26, 26/28, 28/30, 30/32
It is very popular with the farmers, because of high yield and its shorter time to reach production. It is very popular is some markets like Turkey, S.Arabia and Greece
ROUND ( SİİRT )
This type of pistachio is round in shape and it’s different than long pistachios.
Size: : 24/26, 26/28, 28/30, 30/32, 32/34.
It is shorter in length and smaller in size in comparison to other types of pistachios.
Siirt pistachios are the first type in terms of exportation.
Fungal contamination and subsequent production of aflatoxin can occur in crops in the field, at harvest, during postharvest operations and in storage. The rate and degree of contamination are dependent on temperature, humidity and soil and storage conditions. Prevention, particularly by excluding or reducing toxigenic mould growth and toxin production in susceptible food crops, is the most effective way to restrict mycotoxin contamination. In practice, this can be accomplished by reducing fungal infections in growing crops through rapid drying and correct storage of the harvested crops, the use of effective anti-mould preservatives and adherence to proper postharvest processing, transport and distribution practices.
Many mycotoxins, including aflatoxins, can form during the growing stages of certain crops. Climate, sources of fungal inoculum (or suitability of the fungal substrate), potential insect vectors and the plant response (or the plant susceptibility to fungal infestation) can interact to result in specific mycotoxin occurrence. Damage caused by insects can expose susceptible tissues to colonization by toxigenic fungi with subsequent mycotoxin formation.
Following harvest and during shipment and storage of agricultural commodities, toxigenic mould growth and potential mycotoxin production are influenced by many factors including moisture level, temperature, aeration, infestation by insects and other microorganisms, storage time, chemical treatments, spore infection density and storage conditions (especially leakage of water or condensation).
By far the most critical environmental factors determining whether a substrate will support mould growth are moisture content, temperature and time. Thus, drying, proper storage and suitable transportation are of prime importance in prevention.
The prevention of mycotoxin contamination in storage is largely a matter of strict moisture control of the crop. There must be no insect activity, as insects can create favourable microclimates for toxigenic fungal growth; no moisture migration; no condensation or water leaks; and no rodent activity, as the moisture level could be increased by urination. In summary, conditions which restrict fungal growth will almost invariably limit or exclude mycotoxin production.
Where harvesting occurs in dry weather, mycotoxin contamination does not usually reach alarming proportions. It becomes a problem where harvesting is done in very humid weather. In many developing countries, the combination of insufficient drying equipment coupled with humid atmospheric conditions results in unacceptable levels of aflatoxin in harvested groundnuts, tree nuts and other foods.
OUR PREVENTING ACTIONS
BEFORE AND DURING HARVESTING
Staying in touch with our farmers and giving them advices for having a high quality product. (Farming and harvesting)
Having a harvesting scheduale for each farmer to reduce the postprocessing time for pistachio.
Decrease Pistachio processing time by using high tech machinery.
Using fully automated machinery to dry the pistachio and reduce the time.
Using different methods to keep pistachio safe from insects in controlled storages.
Nuts are sorted, using visual sorting techniques, to eliminate those with defects.
Empty or partially empty pistachios are separated by an air stream, and unsplit pistachios by floatation in water.
Shells are cracked for extraction of kernels when desired.
Nuts are sorted to eliminate those with possible aflatoxin contamination.