PDO Chios Mastiha* is produced exclusively in southern Chios at the 24 Mastic villages (Mastihohoria). Any attempt to cultivate this particular type of mastic tree in other regions proved fruitless. The tear flows only from the mastic tree grown in those specific villages.
The self-growing tree bears the name Pistachia Lentiscus, Chios Variety, of the Anacardiacea family. It is an evergreen leafy shrub, no more than three meters high. It takes 40-50 years for the tree to obtain its final form; it “lives” a total of about 100 years and produces mastic after the 5th year of its life. Mastiha’s colour is ochre green when harvested, but over time, from 6 to 18 months it disappears and turns a yellowish colour, like a dull crystal. It has a characteristic flavour, slightly bitter at the start, and tough texture. The hardness degree depends on the size of the tear and the temperature of the atmosphere at the time of the harvest.The use of any dyes and preservatives is prohibited during the processing of Mastiha.Mastiha harvesting lasts from 15 July to 15 October every year.