Grapefruit: Sweet and Tasty

Grapefruit has been a popular Texas crop for over 100 years. Grapefruit makes up 80% of all citrus grown in Texas and is produced in the Rio Grande Valley. The Rio Grande Valley provides the perfect subtropical growing conditions for grapefruit trees to thrive. It takes at least three years for grapefruit trees to produce fruit, but as the trees age, yields increase. In fact, a 10-year-old tree can produce up to 250 lbs. of fruit annually!

Grapefruit can be enjoyed fresh, frozen, or canned, and can be utilized in a number of ways. Grapefruit juice can be extracted from the fruit and frozen, grapefruit peel can be candied and used as a source of pectin for the preservation of other fruits, and grapefruit peel oil is commonly used as a soft- drink flavoring. Even grapefruit byproducts are incredibly useful! The waste from grapefruit packing plants is converted to molasses for cattle, and grapefruit seed hulls can be used for soil conditioning or combined with dried pulp and used as cattle feed.

Not only is grapefruit a versatile multipurpose product, it is also very nutritious. As a citrus fruit, grapefruit is high in Vitamin A and Vitamin C, and is sodium free, cholesterol free, and nearly fat free. Just one half of a grapefruit can provide up to 70 percent of the daily recommended amount of Vitamin C.

MyPlate recommends including two servings of fruit in your diet daily. One half of a grapefruit is considered one serving of fruit. Include grapefruit in salsa, salads, or atop greek yogurt for a filling and nutritious breakfast today!

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