The Bottom Line: Delicious facts about raisins!
The Full Story:
- Although some grapes are mechanically dehydrated to produce raisins, sunlight gets most of the job done by drying most grapes naturally in vineyards.
- Raisin colors vary by the drying process. A dark purplish/black raisin is sundried. A lighter to medium brown raisin is mechanically dehydrated in drying tunnels. A golden, bright yellow raisin is also mechanically dried and treated with sulfur dioxide to retain color. A green raisin is air dried in adobe houses.
- In 1873, California suffered a devastating drought that dried the grapes on the vine. As people tried to find a way to recoup their grape crops, one grower decided to sell the withered grapes as a “Peruvian delicacy” and the California raisin industry was created. California now produces the majority of the world’s raisin supply.
- Raisins contain important nutrients such as iron, copper, calcium and antioxidants.
- It takes over four tons of grapes to produce one ton of raisins.
- The finest raisins are considered to come from Malaga, Spain but Fresno, California is the Raisin Capital of the world.
- The word raisin comes from the Latin word “racemus” meaning “a cluster of grapes or berries.”