Broccoli is one of the most versatile vegetables, which can be prepared in countless ways and has many benefits for us, being essential for a healthy lifestyle. It can be eaten both raw and steamed, baked or boiled. It goes well with soups and salads and you can definitely add it to a green smoothie.
Broccoli comes from the Mediterranean basin. The name of this vegetable comes from the Italian word “brocco” which means branch or bud. They were cultivated in antiquity but became popular in Europe in the 16th century. They were brought to the United States by Italian immigrants. It was from there that their consumption began to become fashionable again after the First World War.
Broccoli is part of the cruciferous family, along with green, red, or kale cabbage, Brussels sprouts, radishes, cauliflower, and turnips.
How much does broccoli cost?
On average, each pound of broccoli costs $1.5 to $5, depending on when and where you buy it from. Fresh broccoli can be purchased in two different forms: by pound or by “head”. The variety and the geographical location also influence the price.
For example, a head/bunch (or pound) of loose broccoli costs anywhere between $1.5 and $3.5, while organic broccoli could be up 40% higher at $6 per bunch, but it’s worth every penny when compared with regular old frozen veggies.
The small pieces of broccoli are known as florets and are usually sold in frozen bags. The price per bag is between $1.75 and $5.5. For instance, you can buy a 14-ounce bag from Walmart of its own brand of broccoli florets for only $2.
A poll on Chow’s website reveals that almost half (49%) of their forum members paid $1.5 to $5 per pound for broccoli.
Frozen and fresh broccoli sold at farmers’ markets, grocery stores, or restaurants can vary in price. For example, a 2020 study found that the average cost per pound for florets was $3.75 while broccoli heads were priced between $2.64 and $3.25 per pound, and frozen broccoli was $2.87 per pound.
According to some users on Reddit, in a region with a common crop, at a real farm, broccoli can cost $2-3 per pound. For example, at Rodin Farm, the price of this fresh vegetable is $3 per pound.
What are the extra costs?
There are many dishes and ways to enjoy your broccoli. You can dice it up and sauté with butter, seasonings, or even melt cheese on top. It will definitely make the perfect side dish for any meal you’re planning, but if raw vegetables aren’t really to your taste, then you can try dipping them into ranch dressing instead.
Important things to consider
The best way to consume it without losing even one of its properties is to steam it for 10 minutes or sauté in butter. Season with lemon or garlic, serve as a garnish, or in various recipes in which broccoli is the main ingredient.
You can find it in most stores, and you have to choose those items that have very dark green or purple/blue bouquets as their content is richer in vitamin C and beta-carotene than light green or yellowish ones. When the flowers start to soften, the broccoli starts to age and is no longer so fresh.
It is usually sold wrapped in cellophane, which is a good way to preserve it. But choose unpackaged options.
Organic broccoli may be a little more prone to insect infestation as it is not treated with any pesticides. Before cooking broccoli, ensure you clean well all of the florets because there is no doubt that bugs have burrowed themselves into your produce. Though, you can get rid of these insects by soaking the organic greens in salt water beforehand.
Simply grow it under row covers if you want to prevent your broccoli from being devoured by leaf-eating caterpillars. Leafy greens like broccoli are best grown in a 6.0 pH soil with low sunlight exposure. They also appreciate an abundant amount of moisture and good organic nutrients.
The shelf life of broccoli is quite long, from seven days to two weeks, but you can tell when it’s going bad by the green color becoming yellow. You can store broccoli in the refrigerator in hermetically sealed plastic bags.
Health benefits of eating broccoli:
- it can stop the development of several forms of cancer and can prevent the appearance of this disease;
- may lower cholesterol;
- protects the intestinal flora;
- protects eyesight;
- regulates intestinal transit;
- regulates blood sugar levels and prevents diabetes;
- protects against premature aging;
- eliminates inflammation from the body;
- it can lower blood pressure.
Although this vegetable has a variety of health benefits, there are some side effects such as:
- abdominal pain;
- allergic reactions;
- skin irritations.
Broccoli nutritional facts
Broccoli price trend
Broccoli prices have been on an upward trajectory in recent years. In 2018, the average retail price for broccoli was $1.72 per pound. In 2022, it reached its highest price $2.28 per pound with a 32% increase over four years.
Looking more recently, broccoli prices in 2022 were up about 11% from 2021 levels. The average price in 2021 was $2.05 per pound.
The lowest prices in broccoli are typically seen in the peak summer season in the main growing regions. In 2022, prices bottomed around $1.15/lb wholesale in mid-summer.
The United States has a significant import/export value for Fresh Headed Broccoli, with a wholesale price change of +7.03%.
The US imported around 137 million lbs of broccoli in 2021, mostly from Mexico which accounts for over 90% of imports. This supplements domestic production.
The US exported only 26 million lbs of broccoli in 2021, so the US remains a net importer and relatively stable.
The retail price of broccoli can vary throughout the year due to factors such as seasonality, supply and demand, and production conditions. The demand for broccoli has increased as consumers look for healthier foods. This allows retailers to pass on higher broccoli production costs.
How can I save money?
If you are looking for a great deal, be sure to check out the special promotions that some stores offer. These sales can often lead to savings during peak seasons and will bring your total bill down significantly.
It’s a great idea to grow your own vegetables if you have the space as it is easy to grow and it will be cheaper. If people eat them on a regular basis, then they should consider growing them in their garden as well because that way there won’t be any need for grocery store trips or other food sources.
Broccoli can be found at your local farmer’s markets for a much lower price. Plus, the flavor will be even better since it is coming straight from the cultivation. For example, the online website FoodCoop.com allows you to search for a local farmers market in your area and see what they’re selling, as well as how much it will cost at different times of the year or when organic is preferred over conventional produce.