Nature is full of surprises,
and it is often at the heart of the most unexpected regions with the most inhospitable climates
that it conceals its greatest treasures...
Nopal, or Opuntia ficus indica in Latin, is a variety of cactus native to Latin America, where it was prized by the Aztecs for its nutritional qualities and medicinal properties.
The blooms of the cactus are magnificent large bright yellow flowers which give way to elongated cactus pears weighing between 50 and 400 grammes.
Nopal was brought to the Mediterranean coast by Christopher Columbus when he returned from his first trip to the New World.
The scientist and naturalist René-Antoine Ferchault de Réaumur (1683-1757) said of the fruit, "Perhaps by giving us this precious medicine, the New World is offering us a more useful gift than if it had sent us all its silver and gold." A plant with no aversion to arid climates, it easily adapts to the very dry, poor soils of the area surrounding the Mediterranean Sea, especially in North Africa, the south of Spain, Sicily and Sardinia. Since then, it has become a symbol of hot, sunny countries, and in Tunisia has been nicknamed "the sultan of fruits".
Today, at the heart of the arid regions of Tunisia, Nopaï cactus pears are cultivated in our own fields according to Organic Agriculture processes.
Our ingredients are natural, organic and ECOCERT-certified.
As the seasons pass, the sun-drenched cactus pears naturally turn from orange to pink, developing a juicy, delicate pulp which brings Nopaï its unique character.
There are two prime periods for harvest: the beginning of the summer and the month of December. Our local farmers, who provide their unique historical expertise, carefully select the ripe fruits and harvest them by hand to preserve their quality. Moreover, these farmers live directly off the revenues brought in by this crop.
Once harvested, the cactus pears are simply peeled, seeded and liquidized to produce a purée. The purée is brought to France to be packaged in a way that preserves the authentic gustatory notes of the fresh fruit. Consumed locally since time immemorial, cactus pears now enter our households in the form of Nopaï: a refreshing way to share its sunny flavours.