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#GreatBritishPeaWeek - How much do you know about the humble pea?

 

As #GreatBritishPeaWeek comes to a close this weekend, we ask how much do you really know about the versatile food?



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This week has been dedicated to the national awareness of peas, thanks to a new campaign #GreatBritishPeaWeek.

 

The campaign was headed up by the Yes Peas! team, and was aimed at increasing awareness and understanding of the provenance and heritage of peas.

 

But how much do you really know about this versatile food?

 


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What is a pea?

While peas are commonly eaten as vegetables, they are in fact a pulse.

 

And not only that, the pea pod is classed as a fruit, as it contains seeds (which are the peas).

Harvesting peas

The harvesting process lasts an average of six to eight weeks with workers pulling shifts of 24 hours a day, seven days a week to harvest, shell and transport the peas from field to frozen as quickly as possible with the majority in just 150 minutes.

UK peas

  • The UK is the largest producer and consumer of frozen peas in Europe
  • Approximately 700 pea growers will harvest two billion portions of peas to feed Britain for the year
  • Britain is 90 per cent self-sufficient in pea production
  • 35,000 hectares (86,500 acres) of peas are grown in the UK each year
  • This is equivalent to about 70,000 football pitches
Peas

How many?

  • Britain eats nearly 9,000 peas per year
  • The world record for eating peas is held by Janet Harris from Sussex who ate 7,175 peas, one by one, in one hour using chopsticks in 1984.

Health benefits

  • Peas are a good source of vitamin A, vitamin C, folate, thiamine (B1), iron and phosphorus
  • They are rich in protein, carbohydrate and fibre and low in fat
  • Half a cup of frozen peas has only 5 per cent of the daily value for sodium and foods low in sodium are good for your heart
  • An 85 gram serving of peas, cooked, provides 50 calories, 4 grams of protein, 8 grams of carbohydrate (of which 3.5 grams are sugars), 3.8 grams of fibre, 17mg of vitamin C (28 per cent of the recommended daily allowance) and 0.2mg Thiamine (B1) (15 per cent of the recommended daily allowance)
  • A 100 calories serving of peas contains more protein than a whole egg or tablespoon of peanut butter
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