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History and Facts:
Although peppers are native to tropical America, their culture and use were wide-spread in Europe before they became popular in the United States. Peppers were introduced into Spain in 1493, were known in Europe by 1585 or earlier, and were taken to India and Southeastern Asia in the 17th century. Florida is the nation's leading sweet pepper producing state, having over a third of the planted acreage.

Florida bell pepper production continues to rebound with a near record production and a record value of more than $230 million. Nearly 25 percent of the states Bell peppers are grown in Palm Beach County.

Nutritional Value:
Peppers are an excellent source of vitamin C, and provide some vitamin A and vitamin E. Peppers also provide potassium and dietary fiber.

Peppers should be stored at 45 to 50 degrees fahrenheit, with a relative humidity of 85 to 90 percent. They are damaged easily and should be handled carefully. Typical shelf life is 8 to 10 days.

October through July