12 Sep /14


Among other things William Turner interested in herbs. His first book, which came out in 1538, was entirely in Latin Libellus de re herbaria novus  (The New Little Book About Plants). However, he does translate a plant here and there – such as wild carrot. This is first time the word carrot is used in English. In a later work, he provides a little more information, i.e. that carrots grow in all countries in plenty. So the carrot was a relatively common plant in England at the time. This becomes obvious because at more or less the same time, Thomas Elyot writes about the properties of the carrot in a popular guide to medicine. He states that parsnips and carrots provide better nourishment than other root plants.

Originally the carrot was grown for medical purposes, and it is certainly still good for health. This is confirmed by modern science. No fat, no cholesterol, lots of vitamin A and only 41 calories per 100 grams, good for vision, teeth, a strong antiseptic, the carrot is certainly a useful part of any diet.

Now the carrot is one of the most important crops globally, with 16 million tonnes being produced at the last count. China is the world’s biggest producer, with a world share of 45%.