Pears are an edible fruit that grow on trees or shrubs in the Rosaceae family, also known as pear trees. These trees typically grow between 10-17 m (32.8 – 55.7 ft) tall, but some species are far smaller. Pears are usually grown in mild and temperate climates and they are able to withstand very cold temperatures. A number of species in this family produce the popular fruit and there are also more than 3000 different varieties within these species. The fruit is known for its classic “pear shape”, but not all varieties have this shape and instead some resemble an apple. Let’s find out where the pear originated from and where it is grown today.
Where do pears originate from?
Pears are thought to be native to the much of Europe, Asia and parts of northern Africa, where they usually grow in areas with coastal and mild temperate regions. The pear has been cultivated for many thousands of years and there is evidence of pears being used for food from Europe that dates back to prehistoric times. It is also known that pears have been cultivated in China for at least 3000 years. The Romans were responsible for much of the popularity and advances in cultivation of this fruit throughout Europe. Pears have now spread throughout the world.
Where are pears grown today?
The largest producer of pears is China at an estimated 15 million metric tons. The next largest producers are the United States, Italy, and Argentina, each with approximately 700,000 metric tons produced each year. Other large producers are Spain, India, Turkey, South Africa, South Korea and Belgium. Pears are grown on all continents on Earth, apart from Antarctica.
Did you know?
Pears are a good source of vitamin C and dietary fiber. However, most of these nutrients are found within the skin of the pear!