Mauritius is a common variety of lychee with good stone to flesh ratio, and easy to peel. The lychee is of medium size with a reasonably smooth pinkish peel which is fairly soft and easy to remove. The flesh is delicious, with a wonderful perfumed exotic flavour, high levels of sweetness and juice. The fruit contains a single large shiny brown seed, though, as a variety, Mauritius lychee tend to have a high proportion of fruit with a small seed (‘chicken-tongue’ seed) which makes them even more enjoyable.
Lychee have quite a long storage life at low temperatures, and Mauritius lychee can be shipped by sea container, though need to be treated with sulphur to avoid post-harvest problems. This treatment only affects the external surface of the skin and results in a dull colouration. If the fruit are air-freighted to their market, the sulphur treatment can be avoided and the pink colouration of the skin retained, though shelf-life is reduced significantly to 7-10 days.
Avoid fruit with a very dull brown skin, particularly if brown spots, wet spots or mould can be seen or excessive softness detected. Older fruit will develop brittle skins without deterioration of the flesh, which makes them slightly easier to peel.
Good Fruit Guide Rating: *****
Mauritius is a one of the best tasting fruit available, and will satisfy anyone looking for a lovely treat.
Sweet, exotic, full of flavour
Names: Mauritius; Kwai Mi; Charlie Long
Origin: The variety originated in southern China but is named after the Indian Ocean island of Mauritius, where it was first planted on a commercial basis. The original name is Kwai Mi (also known as Charlie Long in Hawaii).
Grown in: Mexico, Israel, Florida, Hawaii, South Africa, Mauritius, Madagascar, Mozambique.
Harvest & Availability: Availability for sale in UK:
- January: South Africa, Madagascar, Mozambique
- February: South Africa
- May: Mexico
- June: Mexico
- August: Israel
- September: Israel
- December: South Africa, Madagascar, Mozambique
Lychee-on-line (USA) – Mauritius