Avocados are a green to brown skinned fruit usually in the shape of a pear or egg. This fruit has a hard outer skin with soft flesh and a large seed inside. It usually grows between 7 cm (2.8 in) to 20 cm (7.9 in) long and can weigh up to 1kg (35 oz). The avocado fruit grows on the avocado tree, which is relatively slow growing and can grow up to 20 m (66 ft). Avocado is an important source of good fats and are also a good source of Vitamin K and B vitamins. It is not a sweet fruit, which means that it is used in both sweet and savory cooking. Let’s find out where the avocado comes from and where it is grown today.
Where do avocados originate from?
Wild avocados are native to Mexico where evidence suggests that they have been used for thousands of years. This wild plant was domesticated in this same area and it spread through Central and South America. Europeans first came into contact with this fruit soon after the discovery of the Americas. It was spread to Indonesia in the 1700’s, Brazil in the early 1800’s, Middle East in the early 1900, as well as South Africa and Australia in the 19th century. However, the avocado was not common in Europe until the late 20th century.
Where are avocados grown today?
The largest producer of avocados in the world is Mexico at just over 1 million metric tons. Other large producers are the United States, Indonesia and Columbia. Today, avocados are grown on every continent on Earth, apart from Antarctica.
Did you know?
The avocado tree is toxic to many animals including; dogs, cows, goats, horses, cats, rabbits and rats. The avocado fruit is also toxic to some animals including; horses, dogs and cats!