Avocado Fun Facts
| June 25, 2012
In Kitchen Basics
Featured Recipe: Avocado Butter
Did you know there are more than 80 varieties of avocados? The most common is the year-round Hass avocado, whose original mother tree was born in a backyard in La Habra Heights, California. The Haas is the most recognized US avocado with the rough, dark green to black texture and color. One website claimed the avocado is also known as the alligator pear. While this moniker makes sense for the Haas, I have personally never heard it called by this nickname. The Florida avocado has a lighter green color and a shiny, smooth surface.
Although avocados are grown throughout the temperate southern parts of the US and in Hawaii (there’s even a Hawaiian Avocado Festival) - they originated in South-central Mexico. The two main U.S. producers of the fruit are California and Florida. California is the largest producer, tallying more than 6,000 groves accounting for about 90% of US avocado crops.
Avocados often get a bad rap for being high in fat, but the unsaturated fat in the fruit is considered heart healthy. In fact, avocados are a good source of fiber, potassium, and vitamins C, K and B6. Half an avocado has 160 calories, 15 grams of heart-healthy unsaturated fat, and only 2 grams saturated fat. One globe contains more than one-third daily value of vitamin C, and more than half the day’s requirements of vitamin K.
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