Source: Tehran Times
TEHRAN - Iran exported 171,119 tons of pistachio valued at over $1.5 billion in the first eleven months of the current Iranian calendar year (January 21, 2014-February 19, 2015), a 71 percent rise compared to the same period last year, according to an official in Iranian Agriculture Ministry.
Ali Mohseni said Iran produced 235,000 tons of pistachio in the eleven-month period, showing 17 percent growth from 225,000 tons in the same period of time in previous year, the ISNA news agency reported on Saturday.
The country ranks first in pistachio exports in the world.
Pistachio, a favorite nut during Persian New Year festivities, is now out of reach for most Iranians
(cartoon by Mohsen Zarifian, Ghanoon daily)
Iran exported $5.2 billion of food and agricultural products and imported $13.2 billion of the products in the previous Iranian calendar year, which ended on March 20, 2014, according to the Iranian Customs Administration statistics.
Food and agricultural trade accounted for 20.2 percent of the country's total non-oil trade in the past Iranian calendar year.
About Pistachio: The pistachio is a small tree originally from Persia (Iran), which now can also be found in to regions of Syria, Lebanon, Turkey, Greece, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, India, Pakistan, Egypt, Sicily and possibly Afghanistan (especially in the provinces of Samangan and Badghis). The tree produces an important culinary nut...
Health Benefits: In research at Pennsylvania State University, pistachios in particular significantly reduced levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL cholesterol) while increasing antioxidant levels in the serum of volunteers. In rats, consumption of pistachios as 20% of daily caloric intake increased beneficial high-density lipoprotein (HDL cholesterol) without lowering LDL cholesterol, and while reducing LDL oxidation...
History: Pistachios have been a part of the human diet at least since the late paleolithic. The modern pistachio nut P. vera was first cultivated in Western Asia, where it has long been an important crop in cooler parts of Iran... (read more on wikipedia)
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