- The word 'marmalade' comes from 'marmelo', which is Portuguese for 'quince'. The first marmalade consumed in Britain was a thick quince and rosewater paste, and was supposed to be eaten just after your meal to help with digestion.
- Most European countries use "marmalade" as a generic term for jams of all flavours, simply adding the name of the fruit to the description. In Italy, for example, jam made from oranges is called 'marmellata di arancia'.
- The earliest known British recipe for marmalade made from Seville oranges is "marmelet of oranges" in a recipe book written by Eliza Cholmondeley about 1677. But marmalade was not produced on a commercial scale until the beginning of the 18th century, when an offshore storm forced a Spanish ship packed with Seville oranges seek shelter in Dundee harbour. James Keiller, a local grocer at the time, purchased the entire cargo at a very keen price, only to discover that these oranges were not sweet but sour and he couldn't sell them to anyone. His mother, Janet, came up with the idea of replacing the quinces she usually used to make marmalade with these oranges. She sold it in the family grocers shop and it proved so popular that she began to make it year in year out. Within 20 years the demand for orange marmalade in Scotland was so great that the world's first marmalade factory was opened in Dundee in 1797.