Is it a fruit or vegetable?

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Thomas Hobbs


Is it a fruit or vegetable?

New research finds a disconnect in Brits' ability to differentiate between fruit and vegetables

Is it a fruit or vegetable?
Tomato: a fruit commonly seen as a vegetable

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The British public has a lack of knowledge on the difference between fruit and vegetables, according to a new poll in which 49 per cent of respondents thought a tomtato was a vegetable. 

Nearly 500 people took part in the survey by, with 99 per cent incorrectly recognising peas in a pod as veg and only four per cent correctly identifying butternut squash as a fruit.

Furthermore, a respective 91 and 93 per cent of respondents incorrectly listed peppers and pumpkins as members of the vegetable family.

Meanwhile, a staggering 97 per cent of those polled believed olives and aburgines to be vegetables, while only 34 per cent correctly identified a cucumber as a fruit.

A spokesperson for, said that consumers are confused as fruits are often served with savoury meals. 

He said: “The simplest way to identify which is a fruit and which is a vegetable is that fruit has seeds.  In a cucumber the seeds run through the middle of the plant. In an avocado or olive, the seed is the stone at the centre.”

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Old Comments
  • Sorry, guys, it is utterly irrelevant what the biological basis of a 'fruit' or a 'vegetable' is; a more helpful definition is, "Would I want to eat it with ice cream?"; this puts rhubarb in the fruit category and brings peas and cucumbers back into veg. And why do I care? because we need to aim for five serves of veg a day, but only two of fruit (because of their sugar content); so, don't confuse the public with biology, help them to choose a better diet!!

    Julian Heyes

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