- Author: Jeannette E. Warnert
Sweet potatoes are perhaps most familiar in the U.S. smothered with melted marshmallows in a Thanksgiving casserole. But baked, boiled or raw, they can be a healthful part of California cuisine any time of year.
California is a significant producer of sweet potatoes. About 90 percent of the California crop – 18,000 acres – is grown in Merced County, on farms ranging from 5 acres up to several thousand acres. In 2011, the crop’s value statewide was $125 million.
However, you probably won’t find sweet potato farmers at your local farmers market.
“Even smaller growers tend to work with a packing shed and have their crops combined with others and marketed,” said
- Author: Brenda Dawson
What if you could significantly improve the nutritional quality of your diet, just by switching one of the vegetables you eat every day?
In parts of Africa, some people are doing just that by switching from yellow or white sweet potatoes to orange-fleshed varieties.
In many African countries, sweet potatoes are a common staple—though not the orange-fleshed varieties I’m used to finding on the Thanksgiving table.
That orange color signifies the potato’s beta-carotene content, which our bodies convert to vitamin A. Vitamin A deficiency is the leading cause of preventable blindness in children and is crucial to the survival of...
- Author: Janet Byron
A new federal voucher that gives low-income women access to a range of fruits and vegetables could provide unique new marketing opportunities for California growers.
In 2009, the federal Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) began distributing monthly cash vouchers to low-income women with children to buy fruits and vegetables. The program reaches almost half of the infants and one-quarter of children under 5 years old in the United States.
A team of UC Cooperative Extension (UCCE) researchers and nutrition advisors has been exploring the possibility of developing a farm-to-WIC program that would link these low-income consumers with local growers. The purpose of such a program would...