Seed World

10 Interesting Facts About Cabbage

While cabbage is widely known for bringing good fortune each new year, the crop has many other interesting quirks about it.

1: Scott Robb of Palmer, Alaska, is currently the proud world record title holder of the largest cabbage. He won that title at the 17th annual Giant Cabbage Weigh-Off in 2012, with a mammoth cabbage weighing in at 62.71 KG (138.25 pounds).

2: All cabbages and its relatives come from the wild Brassica oleracea plant. This large group contains head cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, kale, Brussels sprouts, and kohlrabi.

3: For thousands of years, people have selected for various parts of this Brassica plant. Selecting for the terminal buds led to head cabbage, selection for lateral buds led to Brussels sprouts, selection for the leaves lead to kale etc.

Made By: Lesley Nakonechny

4: Evidence shows the different cabbages have been cultivated for over 4,000 years. Brussels sprouts, which are in the cabbage family, are the youngest with records dating back only 500 years.

5: The country with the largest volume of cabbage consumption was China (33M tonnes), comprising approx. 45% of total consumption. The world’s second-largest consumer is India (9.2M tonnes), and in third position Russia (3.7M tonnes).

6: Although cabbage is considered Russia’s national food, they do not have the highest levels of cabbage per capita consumption. In 2018 it was Romania with 57 kg per person, South Korea (46 kg per person) and Ukraine (39 kg per person).

Made By: Lesley Nakonechny

7: Legends of babies coming from cabbage patches have been told to children throughout the ages, and there are famous cabbage patch dolls.

8: Scrolls from 1000 BC found in China stated cabbage could be used to cure baldness in men. Perhaps this is why famous baseball player Babe Ruth used to wear a cabbage leaf under his baseball cap during games and it is reported he switched it out for a new leaf halfway through the game.

9: At the turn of the century, cabbage was thought to be food for poor people. Now it is regarded as one of the most nutritional vegetables and is thought to have strong anti-aging and anti-cancer properties. In addition, cabbage is low in saturated fat and cholesterol.

10: Cabbage is high in dietary fibre, vitamin C, vitamin K, folate, potassium, manganese, vitamin A, thiamine, vitamin B6, calcium and iron which help keep the digestive tract and colon in a healthy condition.

Read More from the Spring Edition of European Seed:

We’re All Peas in a Pod

Looking at the Next 100 Years of Seed Testing

Major Features of Romania’s Complex Seed Industry

Puritans and Blenders: A Deep Dive into Variety Mixtures

The Wonders of DNA and Genetic Engineering