Peanuts (Ground Nuts)
The peanut, or groundnut (Arachis hypogaea), is not actually a nut but a member of the legume or “bean” family. It is a small annual herb which grows up to 30cm above the ground
Probably first domesticated and cultivated in Paraguay, the oldest specimens, found in Peru, have been dated to about 7,600 years ago. The Spanish conquistadors found the ‘tlalcacahuatl’ (from which came the Spanish, cacahuate and French, cacahuète) being sold in the marketplace of Tenochtitlan (now Mexico City).
India and China are the world’s largest producers of peanuts, but most of their production is consumed domestically as peanut oil, so exports are less than 4% of world trade. The major producers/exporters of peanuts are the United States, Argentina, Sudan, Senegal, and Brazil. These five countries account for 71% of total world exports.