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Avocado season is here: 10 interesting facts about ‘pear’

Every year we anxiously await July because we in Jamaica know that this is the avocado season!

Given that we are in avocado season, today The Den is sharing 10 things you might not know about what Jamaicans colloquially call, pear.

1. The scientific name for avocado is Persea americana. The term “avocado” was first used by Irish man Hans Sloane, who coined the term in 1696, in a Jamaican catalog on plants. Prior to that people called it ‘alligator pear’.

2. Avocado gets its name from the Aztec word “aguacate” which means “testicle.”

3. Avocados can be poisonous to animals, causing harm or possibly killing them if consumed. Keep it away from your dog!

4. Some individuals are allergic to avocados, these same people tend have latex allergies.

5. In the Latin world, guacamole is a popular avocado dish. Guacamole
comes from the Aztec word ahuacamolli, which loosely translates in to ‘avocado soup’ or ‘avocado sauce’.

6. We all know that in Jamaica avocado is often called pear, what we didn’t know, is that it probably has to do with the nation’s colonial history; in the UK it is often referred to as ‘avocado pear’.

7. The avocado is botanically considered a large berry because it contains a single seed.

Photo showing the single large seed that makes the avocado a berry

8.  Approximately 6 million tonnes of avocados are produce yearly with Mexico contributing to 1/3 of that total.

9. Avocados are considered both a fruit and a vegetable.

10. The avocado is a master of evolution, outliving the animals it adapted to feed. This is known as ‘evolutionary anchronism’.

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