And I had visions of fields and fields of carrot tops, row by row, awaiting plucking from the ground and packaged for me......
The truth behind baby carrots
By Sky McCarthy January 07, 2014 FoxNews.com
Baby carrots have become a lunch box staple. Parents love them for their convenience and because they’re seen as a healthy food choice. Kids love them because they’re sweet and fun to eat.
But what’s the real deal behind baby carrots?
After all, they’re not like regular carrots. They’re perfectly shaped with rounded edges; they don’t have the same thick core; and, even peeled, they’re bright orange. And a quick Google search of baby carrots turns up some frightening information on how they’re made and whether they’re really “soaked in chlorine.” What’s up with that?
We decided to dig up the truth on baby carrots, and here’s what we found.
Most baby carrots sold in U.S. supermarkets are really what the industry calls “baby cuts” – made from longer carrots that have been peeled and cut into a smaller size. These carrots have been specifically bred to be smaller in diameter, coreless and sweeter than regular carrots.
Bob Borda, a spokesman for Grimmway Farms, the world’s largest carrot grower (it handles 10 million pounds every day), says that over the years the company has developed a hybrid that combines the best qualities from over 250 known commercial varieties.
“Naturally, you breed carrots to get the sweetest flavor and crunch,” he told FoxNews.com.
But baby carrots didn’t start out that way. Prior to the mid-1980s, broken and misshaped carrots were discarded, leaving some farmers with as little as 30 percent of their crop to take to stores. Tired of throwing away perfectly good food, California carrot farmer Mike Yurosek took the carrots and used a potato peeler to reshape them into small pieces more suitable for quick munching. Yurosek purchased an industrial green bean cutter to quickly whittle the carrots into the familiar 2-inch portions we still see today — and their popularity took off.
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