All Hail the Peanut! (It’s Nt’l Peanut Day.)

A bag of peanuts

September 13, 2019

Today is National Peanut Day! It also happens to be Friday the 13th. So, here are 13 compelling facts about everybody’s favorite nut – er..., legume.

  1. Taxonomically known as Arachis hypogaea, other unofficial names include: groundnut,[2] goober/goober pea (US), or monkey nut (UK)
  2. Classified as a legume, which means it’s essentially a bean, not a nut. (Nuts grow on trees, which the peaNUT does NOT.)
  3. 2016 world-wide production of peanuts was 44 million metric tons.
  4. China is the world’s leading peanut producer (38% of total, as of 2016).
  5. Peanuts were first cultivated in South America
  6. Georgia produces the most peanuts of any other U.S state, followed by Florida, Alabama, and Texas.
  7. The average American consumes more than 6 pounds of peanuts and peanut butter products annually.
  8. George Washington Carver famously developed at least 105 recipes for peanuts. However, contrary to popular belief, he did not invent peanut butter. The ancient Aztecs and Incas probably get ultimate credit, but in the modern era, several individuals (Dr. John Harvey Kellogg, among them) developed process for commercial peanut butter production (sometimes called “peanut paste” in the early days) in the late 1800s and early 1900s.
  9. Health benefits from peanuts include: abundant proteins, minerals, antioxidants, vitamins, and amino acids.
  10. It takes approximately 540 peanuts to make one 12-ounce jar of peanut butter.
  11. One recent study suggests that early introduction of peanuts into a child’s diet can dramatically reduce the prevalence of peanut allergies.
  12. Arachibutyrophobia is the fear of peanut butter sticking to the roof of your mouth. No joke.
  13. Former U.S. Presidents Thomas Jefferson and Jimmy Carter were both peanut farmers.

(Source: Mental Floss, Wikipedia)