The Facts about Vanilla!!

  1. Vanilla is the only fruit-bearing member of the orchid family.Vanilla Beans

  2. The flower that produces the vanilla bean lasts only one day. The beans are hand-picked and then cured, wrapped, and dried in a process that takes 4 to 6 months.

  3. After saffron, vanilla is the most expensive spice in the world.

  4. In Europe, vanilla was once used in the production of certain medicines such as nerve stimulants and as an aphrodisiac.

  5. Pure vanilla extract contains 13.35 ounces of vanilla beans per gallon during extraction, according to FDA specifications.

  6. Nearly 30% of Americans choose vanilla as their No. 1 ice cream flavor. Chocolate ranks second, with less than 10% of the vote.

  7. Only the melipona bee, found in Central America, can pollinate vanilla. In other parts of the world, humans duplicate the process using a wooden needle.

  8. One tablespoon of vanilla extract has 37 calories, a large portion of which comes from sugars and alcohol.