Kiwi is native to southern China. Originally known as yang tao, it is declared as the "National Fruit" of the People's Republic of China. Other species of Kiwi are native to India and Japan and southeastern Siberia. Cultivation spread from China in the early 20th century, when seeds were introduced to New Zealand by Mary Isabel Fraser, the principal of Wanganui Girls' College, who had been visiting mission schools in Yichang, China. The seeds were planted in 1906 by a Wanganui nurseryman, Alexander Allison, with the vines first fruiting in 1910.
The familiar cultivar of Kiwi 'Hayward' was developed by Hayward Wright in Avondale, New Zealand around 1924. It was initially grown in domestic gardens, but commercial planting began in the 1940s. Export markets opened up after World War II thanks to pioneering research into the transportability of the fruit by John Pilkington Hudson and others at the agriculture department in Wellington. Italy is now the leading producer of kiwifruit in the world, followed by New Zealand, Chile, France, Greece, Japan and the United States. In China, kiwifruit was traditionally collected from the wild, but until recently China was not a major producing country. In China, it is grown mainly in the mountainous area upstream of the Yangtze River. It is also grown in other areas of China, including Sichuan. - Kiwi In China
Kiwi has high content in dietary fiber which helps in improving diseases such as diabetes, by controlling sugar levels, and colon cancer, since fiber binds to toxic compounds in the colon and helps us expel them. Fiber has also been proven to reduce cholesterol levels, improving the conditions of patients with cardiovascular diseases and lowering the probability of heart attacks. - Kiwi Fruit Info
Kiwifruit emerged from our food ranking system as an excellent source of vitamin C. This nutrient is the primary water-soluble antioxidant in the body, neutralizing free radicals that can cause damage to cells and lead to problems such as inflammation and cancer. In fact, adequate intake of vitamin C has been shown to be helpful in reducing the severity of conditions like osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and asthma, and for preventing conditions such as colon cancer, atherosclerosis, and diabetic heart disease. And since vitamin C is necessary for the healthy function of the immune system, it may be useful for preventing recurrent ear infections in people who suffer from them. - Worlds Healthiest Foods
Kiwi seeds are an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids. Research studies shows that consumption of foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease, stroke, and help prevent development of ADHD, autism, and other developmental differences in children. - Nutrition & You