One of my projects during the shutdown has been an investigation of the changes that have gone on in our citrus supply over the previous century. It hasn’t come as much of a surprise to find that, as the American palate drifts ever sweeter, so too have the varietals of citrus grown for the American market. Of particular interest to me are the changes that have taken place in the juices of grapefruits and oranges (limes and lemons have been less biochemically affected by the ravages of the Western diet). I have been seeking out older chemical assays from agricultural journals and government surveys, and have found some very interesting differences between modern and historical varieties pertaining to their acid content, sugar to acid ratios, and flavor.
I have also found what I believe to be the best guess as to what grapefruits would have been used by bars in Havana in the 1920s and 1930s. I will likely be doing a full write up of the research soon enough, but before I do I wanted to reach out to the community here to see if anyone knows of specific varieties advertised in Cuban (or Floridian or Texan) agricultural distributors at the time. I have access to contemporary assays for about a dozen grapefruit varietals and about the same for oranges.
My research expertise is limited to scientific databases, so any help in finding the appropriate sources for such information would also be greatly appreciated.