All About Avocados

If any food is allowed to be called “unique,” it must be the avocado. Its rich, buttery flavor and smooth texture are unmatched. The avocado is a fruit, despite the fact that many assume it to be a vegetable.

According to a July 2006 piece on National Public Radio, the avocado solidly made its way from Mexican and South American culture to U.S. tables in the early 1990s, when it was first grown commercially to service posh hotels in San Francisco and Los Angeles which had been paying as much as $12 per dozen for the cherished fruits.

But back then, the fruit was known as the ahuacate, or, colloquially, “alligator pear.” Farmers—who ultimately formed the California Avocado Association—determined that a name change would be the best way to market the fruit, and collectively came up with a new name: avocado. (In 2002 a Haas Avocado Board was formed.) The NPR piece recounted the rise of the avocado in California, which now accounts for 85 to 90 percent of all the avocados grown in the United States. (Most still come from Mexico, and Chile is another major exporter of avocados.)

The avocado was and still is considered by some to be an aphrodisiac.

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