The Chislett Summer Navel® variety was discovered in Australia on the property of Norm and Greg Chislett. Patented in Australia, the USA and pending in the EU. This variety was obtained more recently than the rest of the late Australian Navel varieties and was later to be commercialised. Exclusive to AVASA everywhere except Australia, the USA and South Africa.
It is a mutation of the Washington variety. The tree is similar to Lane Late but more vigorous, and it also enters production more quickly. Thorns may be found on branches of greater vigour. Production of the variety is good, with a tendency to bear fruit on the inside of the tree. Flowers lack pollen, and the fruit has navel, just like the rest of the Navel group varieties.
Fruit size is excellent, with a round, slightly oval form, fine texture and good colouring. The colour of the fruit is less affected by re-greening in summer than other late Navel varieties.
The fruit is very firm, resistant to fruit-drop and keeps its characteristics throughout the summer. High juice content and no issues with grainy consistency. The pulp is vivid orange in colour. Citric acid and sugar contents are high making it very pleasant in taste. The juice from ripe fruit also lacks limonin, making it suitable for juice production.
Chislett Summer Navel® is currently considered to be the best late Navel variety in Australia, both due to the size of the fruit and its physical (skin texture, firmness) and organoleptic characteristics (juice, sugars and acid).
In terms of harvest, Chislett Summer Navel® has the longest harvest period of any Navel variety, running from the end of the winter to the summer months. The variety may be harvested up to two or three months later than Lane Late. A good harvest programme is important, rotating the lots to be harvested later on in the summer months in order to avoid adverse effects in future productions.
Most Chislett Summer Navel® fruit is harvested in Australia from September to December and in some cases up to January, which would be equivalent to March to June and even July in Spain.
Navel oranges are the world’s favourite variety for fresh consumption. Other varieties such as Valencia, Salustiana, Hamlim, Sanguinelli, etc are less accepted and often used for juice. Its fresh consumption is sometimes reduced to periods in which Navel varieties are unavailable.
There is a growing global interest in finding new Navel varieties to extend the commercialisation period.
The Chislett Summer Navel® extends the Navel oranges commercialisation period and may even substitute the Valencia variety for fresh consumption. The juice from ripe Chislett Summer Navel® fruit also lacks limonin, which means it is suitable for juice production.
The extended harvest period for the Chislett Summer Navel® affords the variety great flexibility, allowing it to be commercialised at the most suitable moments depending on market availability.