Sesame seeds grow in pods on the sesame plant. These plants are grown commercially for the seeds, which are commonly eaten raw, added to foods like bread or made into sesame oil. They are a popular food because they are rich in many essential vitamins and minerals. The largest producers of sesame seeds are India and China and . If you have ever wanted to know how sesame seeds are grown and harvested, keep reading to find out.
How are sesame seeds harvested?
Sesame seeds grow in rows of eight inside pods that are about 2.5-4cm (1-1.5 inches) long. The plants are ready to harvest after about 90-150 days and should be harvested before the overnight temperature drops too low and ruins the seeds. Large scale growing of sesame seeds does not frequently occur because they can be quite time consuming to harvest on the large scale. In fact, most sesame seeds are still harvested by hand because they are easily damaged or lost in harvesting machinery. The plants are cut into stalks with the pods intact and the leaves are removed. They are then bundled up into 10-15 stalks. These are left in a dry area until the pods go brown and once this has happened the pods are crushed to gather the seeds. Seeds can be stored at room temperature with low humidity for up to 5 years before spoiling.