Acerola (Malpighia punicifolia L.) is also known as the Barbados cherry or Antilles cherry.

Acerola is a small, fruit-bearing tree that can grow up to 5 meters tall in the dryer parts of the rainforest. The tree produces a bright red fruit that is about 1-2cm in diameter. The ripe fruit has a juicy, tangy flavor. Acerola grows naturally in northeastern Brazil, where it is also cultivated. In Brazil, Acerola juice is as common as orange juice is in Europe.

Acerola ranks second on the list of Vitamin C-rich foods. The common, peeled orange has a Vitamin C content of about 0.05%, whereas Acerola can contain up to 4.5% Vitamin C. The vitamin content varies depending on where Acerola grows its maturity, the season and the climate. The riper the fruit, the less Vitamin C it contains. Therefore it is ideal to harvest Acerola when the fruit is still green. Besides being rich in Vitamin C, Acerola contains twice as much Magnesium, Vitamin B5 and Potassium as oranges. Acerola also contains lots of Vitamin A from 1290 to 3750 mcg/100g compared with carrots containing 3300 g mcg/100.