Saigon Cinnamon

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Saigon cinnamon
Saigoncinnamon.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Magnoliids
Order: Laurales
Family: Lauraceae
Genus: Cinnamomum
Species: C. loureiroi
Binomial name
Cinnamomum loureiroi
Nees

Saigon cinnamon (Cinnamomum loureiroi, also known as Vietnamese cinnamon or Vietnamese cassia and Quế Trà My or Quế Thanh or " Quế Trà Bồng" in Vietnam) is an evergreen tree in the genus Cinnamomum, indigenous to mainland Southeast Asia. Despite its name, it is more closely related to cassia (C. cassia) than to cinnamon (C. verum, “true cinnamon”, Ceylon cinnamon), though in the same genus as both. Saigon cinnamon has 1-5% essential oil in content and 25% cinnamaldehyde in essential oil, which is the highest of all the cinnamon species. Consequently, out of the three species, it commands the highest price.

The scientific name was originally spelled as Cinnamomum loureirii, but because the species is named after the botanist João de Loureiro, this is to be treated under the ICN as an orthographic error for the correctly derived spelling of loureiroi.

Production and uses[edit]

Saigon cinnamon is produced primarily in Vietnam, both for domestic use and export. The Vietnam War disrupted production, but since the beginning of the early 21st century Vietnam has resumed export of the spice, including to the United States, where it was unavailable for nearly 20 years. Although it is called Saigon cinnamon, it is not produced in the area around the southern city of Saigon, but instead in the central and Central Highlands regions of the country, particularly the Quảng Ngai Province of central Vietnam.

Saigon cinnamon is used primarily for its aromatic bark, which is quite similar to that of Cinnamomum cassia but with a more pronounced, complex aroma.

In Vietnamese cuisine, Saigon cinnamon bark is an important ingredient in the broth used to make a noodle soup called phở.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]