The History of Beet


I begin the section on beetroot by looking at the history of the cultivation of the plant and its ancient uses. It had (has) great value in therapeutics, medicine, preservation, as a colourant from ages past and in its modern use. Ceclu (2020) correctly states, “one of the richest foods from the vegetal kingdom, containing essential components like Vitamins, minerals, phenols, carotenoids, nitrate, ascorbic acids and betalains.”

I generally look at the inclusion of plant matter in curing brines. I look at the legislative framework in the EU to gain insight into understanding the background of some of the modern cures which claim to rely on plant extracts for colour development.

Two images of table beet with spherical roots from the festoons painted by Giovanni Martini da Udine incorporated in the Cupid and Psyche frescos of Raphael Sanzio, 1517, in the Villa Farnesina, Rome. Source: Caneva (1992)

The Origin of Beet

Beetroot comes from wild sea beet, B. vulgaris (L.) subsp. maritima (L.) Arcang and is where all Beta crops originate from, designated as B. vulgaris (L.) subsp. vulgaris. The other members of this group are mangel-wurzel, grown as cattle feed, Swiss chard, fodder beet and sugar beet. Together, they are called the B. Vulgaris complex. Table beet and beetroot are the same plants, the one being a reference more common to America and the other to England. Sugar beet is distinct from beetroot being white and grown mostly for the extraction of sucrose while beetroot is red and the sugar is not extracted. Beetroot juice is mostly reg or golden (Ware, 2019).

Many references list mangel-wurzel and fodder beet as the same plant. There is a subtle difference though with mangel-wurzel having a lower dry matter content (<13%) than fodder beet. Mangel is probably a cross between beetroot and chard, while fodder beet is in all likelihood a later cross of mangel and sugarbeet.

Goldman & Janick (2021) says that “wild forms of beetroot were consumed in antiquity mainly for their leaves with roots used medicinally.” This is an interesting statement. I have come across the exact same references to saltpetre, and we looked at at least one of the famous uses from antiquity. For the medicinal values of these salts and vegetables to have been discovered it was probably consumed broadly in ancient times. The development of a swollen root was the result of domestication.

According to Goldman & Janick (2021), “the first coloured illustration of swollen rooted table beet, B. vulgaris, can be found in the 1515–1517 frescos of Raphael Sanzio and Giovanni Martina da Udine in the Villa Farnesina in Rome. Swollen roots in Roman beet are illustrated and described in the 1587 French herbal Historia Generalis Plantarum of Jacques Dalechamps. Conically shaped beet roots are found in the market painting of Franz Snijders in the 17th century. Various spherical forms of beet root are found in the work of American painter James Peale in 1826. A complete array of beet root types is found in the Benary catalog of 1876. Modern, spherical beet roots were depicted in 1936 by the Russian painter Zinaida Serebriankov, 1936. Artistic and historical representations of table beet suggest that swollen rooted forms have existed during the past five centuries, but conically shaped roots were gradually replaced by spherically shaped roots during this period.” (Goldman & Janick, 2021)

Sugar beet had huge economic relevance from very early on. “More than 275 million tons of sugar beet were produced worldwide in 2019, with more than 30 million tons produced in the United States, supplying between 50 and 60% of United States sucrose demand (USDA-ERS, 2020). Table beet, Swiss chard, and fodder beet are important in certain regions but cultivated on a relatively small land area worldwide. Table beet is primarily consumed for its succulent root and hypocotyl, while Swiss chard is consumed for its leaves and petioles. Increasingly, table beet and Swiss chard are also important for the production of immature-leaf salad greens. Fodder beet is strictly used for livestock feed, and both mangel wurzel and fodder beet have conical, bulky roots.” (Goldman & Janick, 2021)

“Wild forms of Beta crops including Beta maritima possessed very slender roots which were not generally consumed as vegetables. During the more than 2,000-year history of Beta crops, humans selected swollen rooted forms that were eventually cultivated as livestock feed, sources of sucrose, and vegetables. In the process, root morphology was transformed.” (Goldman & Janick, 2021)

Genetic analysis suggests that the Baltic Sea coast populations are pure wild beets

Botanical and Horticultural Origins

Beta vulgaris subsp. maritima, the progenitor of the B. vulgaris complex, is found along the Mediterranean coast as well as the Atlantic coast into Scandinavia, throughout the Middle East, and in India, Iran, and Azerbaijan (De Candolle, 1882Nottingham, 2004).” (Goldman & Janick, 2021) Interestingly, the earliest references come to us from the shores of the Caspian Sea which is right in the centre of the region where I believe that nitrite curing was changed into an art and adjacent to the regions where the oldest form of vegetable curing which still exists today came from namely Georgia, Armenia and Turkey.

Roots are unswollen and often forked.

Root forms in the Beta vulgaris complex: (top left) wild Beta maritima; (top right) Swiss chard; (lower left) mangel; (lower center) sugar beet; (lower right) table beet. Sources: Lee Panella and Mitch McGrath, National Plant Germplasm System, Peggy Greb, USDA ARS, Irwin Goldman.

“The root of sea beet was neither spherical nor succulent and likely difficult to prepare. The first-century Roman naturalist Pliny described the roots of beet as less fleshy than those of the saffron crocus, indicating some root swelling (Dalby, 2003). Ancient Greek, Roman, and Egyptian civilizations described the use of vegetable beet in their cuisines and medicinal remedies, but most of these recipes focused on beet leaves. These sources indicate that beet was primarily a leaf crop and not widely consumed as a root vegetable. Swiss chard, which is also a domesticated form of B. vulgaris, is one of the primary leafy forms of the crop available today. Table beet leaves are also widely consumed, particularly as immature leaves for salad greens”. (Goldman & Janick, 2021)

“The enlarged roots of beet are possible because of the presence of supernumerary cambia which allow for root expansion into a spherical or conical form (Goldman, 2020). Supernumerary cambia exist naturally in sea beet, but the root is not particularly swollen. Little information is available presently regarding the genetic control of beet root shape.” (Goldman & Janick, 2021)

Goldman & Janick (2021) shows that the domestication in B. vulgaris took place after it left the Mediterranean, likely in Europe. They say that when exactly this happened is unknown, but documentary evidence for their presence does not occur until the 1500s when swollen rooted forms used for livestock feed and human use begin (Nottingham, 2004). They refer to Luigi Squalermo, who, in his “De simplicibus” of 1561, “described a beet variety from Greece called Cochinoguglia, with bright red, round roots like a turnip (Biancardi et al., 2012).” Also, Dalechamps (1587) “described this type as Beta erythrorhiza and Biancardi et al. (2012) who described the writings of Pietro de Crescenzi from 1605, which documented the biennial nature of beet.” “His work, known as “Ruralium commodorum,” explicitly suggests that beet was being selected for flowering in its second season of growth following a period of vernalization, emphasizing the value of the swollen rooted vegetable for harvest at the end of the first season.” (Goldman & Janick, 2021) reports that the oldest archaeological proof of the use of beetroot goes back to ancient times found on the Neolithic site of Aartswoud in the Netherlands and in Saqqara pyramid at Thebes, Egypt, which dates from the time of the Third Dynasty (third millennium BC). They mention Assyrian texts that say that beetroots were growing in the Hanging Gardens of Babylon in 800 BC. This reference is problematic because we still don’t know if Hanging Gardens ever existed but we know for certain that we can be positive that Mesopotamia knew about beetroots at that time. “Ancient Greeks cultivated beetroot around 300 BC. They didn’t use the roots of the plant and only ate the leaves.” (

“The ancient word for beet in Greek is teutlon, which may refer to the cephalopod squid in the language of Ancient Greek. The relationship between squid and beet is unclear, though the taxonomic order for squid is Teuthida. The modern word beet comes from the Latin word beta, which appears to have Celtic origins. It is not entirely clear why the plant was associated with the Greek letter beta, but one hypothesis is that the seed ball, which is botanically an aggregate fruit, is reminiscent of the shape of that letter.” (Goldman & Janick, 2021)

The Greeks “respected the root and offered it to the sun god Apollo in the temple of Delphi. They also considered it to be worth its weight in silver. Hippocrates used leaves of beetroot for binding and dressing wounds while Talmud, written in 4th and 5th century, advises eating beetroot, among other things, for longer life. Romans on the other ate roots but mainly for medicinal purposes. They used it as a laxative or to cure fever. There were some who used it as food: Apicius, a famous Roman gourmet, wrote a book called “The Art of Cooking” and in it gave recipes with beetroots like broths and salads with mustard, oil, and vinegar.” (

“Dioscorides, a Greek physician and botanist working in the first century, described two kinds of beets: one, a white beet, which he claimed eased the bowels, and the other, a dark form, binds the bowels. He found both of them to be beneficial for earaches and for dandruff and lice. In particular, he recommended the boiled root for the treatment of pustules and burns (Beck, 2005). There is no evidence that beet possessed a swollen root in antiquity, and the first evidence of swollen roots cannot be found until the middle ages.” (Goldman & Janick, 2021)

The list of ancient references is interesting. For the biblical and Talmudic references to it, see the work of Goldman & Janick (2021). I mention one in particular. They write that “Rabbi Hisda, who lived in Babylonia (modern-day Iraq) in the fourth century CE, wrote that a fully cooked dish of beets was beneficial for the heart, the eyes, and the intestines, and especially so when the dish sits on the stove and makes a sound as though it is continuously boiling.” The reference to the value of the health of the heart is interesting from a nitrate perspective.

Apart from these, they mention that “beet was well known to Greek and Romans, as well as contiguous Armenian and Arab cultures (Greppin, 1990). However, none expressed much enthusiasm for the consumption of beet root, preferring instead to use it only sparingly as a medicinal plant. They did, however, use its leaves as a vegetable, and in addition to its use in salads, dishes with fish wrapped in beet leaves were common in Greece (Greppin, 1990). A Talmudic recipe from the seventh century CE included a recommendation to celebrate a festive day with a dish of beets, a large fish, and heads of garlic (Tractate Shabbat, Chapter 118b). The Roman Apicius described several beet recipes including: “slice the beets with leeks and crush coriander and cumin, add raisin wine, boil all down to perfection, bind it, serve [the beets] separate from the broth with oil and vinegar.” He also suggested cooking beets with mustard and pickling them in oil and vinegar (Apicius, 2009).” (Goldman & Janick, 2021)

Goldman & Janick (2021) conclude that “it appears that they existed in the 16th century.” “Sugar beet was selected from fodder beet (McGrath and Panella, 2018). A. Margraff, a chemist, identified sucrose from B. vulgaris in 1747, and by 1801 a sugar factory was opened in Silesia for manufacture of sugar from white fodder beet. Fodder beet was low in sucrose concentration, perhaps only around 4% (McGrath and Panella, 2018), and thus sugar refining was inefficient. However, early efforts at scientific plant breeding were applied to increase sucrose concentration. Beet may have been one of the first crops bred using today’s modern progeny test, making use of specific gravity as a proxy for sugar concentration (Vilmorin, 1859). Within a century, sucrose concentrations more than quadrupled, and the use of sugar beet as a source of sucrose became commonplace in many of the world’s temperate regions.” (Goldman & Janick, 2021)

Beet in Pre-History

It is possible to make certain predictions of the use of beet in pre-history based on trends from recorded history. It is important that we remember that when we talk about “boiling”, we skip the majority of human existence as the technology of boiling is a relatively new invention on the macro time scale of human existence. It is likely that sea beet beets were initially consumed raw and that the leaves, as well as the roots, were consumed. I make this inference from the point of view that both are edible and ancient cultures would have discovered that. It would not have made sense from an energy perspective to discard anything that was harvested that could have been used.

It is possible that grinding them down was practised long before boiling was invented, and the technology related to containers became generally available for use by the average person. One of the things they would have noticed about beet was the juice from the root, despite the fact that it looked more like a carrot than the plant we know today.

It is known that ancient humans experimented widely with every substance that came their way. In Southern Africa, for example, sophisticated knowledge existed about the properties of various tree saps and how they responded when they were heated. This knowledge was used in making arrows and spearheads and the art of fastening them to sticks was sophisticated.

I dealt with this in Ancient Plant Curing of Meats where I use the pastirma as a case in point which undoubtedly has ancient roots. Beetroot, which has been well known in these regions from the earliest time was, as far as I can determine, never used in producing pastirma. In a recent study, which is instructive in our current work, Aksu (2020) investigated the effects of red beet extracts on protein and lipid oxidation, colour, microbial, sensory properties and storage stability of Turkish pastırma. They found that increasing the concentration of lyophilized red beet water extract (LRBWE) in cemen paste, used to coat the partially dried meat, “led to a decrease in lipid oxidation (P < 0.01), and an increase in redness (a∗) value (P < 0.01) and sensory properties (P < 0.01) of sliced pastırma compared with control pastırma.” “These results revealed that the addition of 1.0% or 1.2% LRBWE to cemen paste was effective to improve the colour stability, lipid oxidation, microbial and sensory quality of pastırma during storage.” (Aksu, 2020)

In another country close to the significant Black Sea region, Hungarian Borscht traditionally included beetroot in a marrow stew. Apart from select recipes such as Borscht, there are not many including beetroot in the way that pastrima was made and pastirma does not traditionally contain beetroot. Al least not as far as we can trace it back. One of the reasons is undoubtedly that the plant, beetroot, as we know it today has been developed relatively recently. That its inclusion in meat cures stands in a great tradition of plant curing is certain!

Culinary Uses of Table Beet from the Past

Ellet (1872) introduced beetroot as follows in her work on cooking: “Beet Root is a root of a plant which of late years has been extensively cultivated for the purpose of feeding cattle; the colour which it possesses is easily extracted, for the purpose of tinting various articles employed in cookery. When boiled, it is a beautiful addition to every salad.”

Ellet (1872) makes another interesting preliminary comment on beetroot when she writes, “Beets should not be cut or scraped before they are boiled, or the juice will run out, and make them insipid.”

Root of beet of Filippo Strozzi, 1712, painted by Barolomeo Bimbi. Note the prominence of supernumerary cambial rings in the cut surface if this huge beet. Source: Consiglio Nazionale Delle Ricerche (1982).

Boiling has been associated with beet since very early, the initial references are probably related to the leaves. Goldman & Janick (2021) observed that “some of the earliest words for beet are associated with the “boiling down” of a vegetable, suggesting it was an ingredient in soup or stew, or perhaps a boiled vegetable on its own. Boiling may have been the primary method for cooking the root during this period of antiquity when the root was not swollen and succulent. Boiled beet is referred to in the Talmud, which captures practices up through the fifth century CE. Beet root is still boiled for many recipes, though it is also likely to be roasted, steamed, or pickled. Steamed, peeled beet roots have become a popular product in Europe and the United States in recent years, as they provide a ready-to-eat product that can be consumed fresh in salads or cooked further in savoury dishes. Pickled beets have been popular for many centuries, and may often have both sugar and various spices. They are typically served cold. Harvard beets, which are prepared with sugar, spices, vinegar, and butter and are served warm, can be found as a canned or jarred product in US markets. Australians and New Zealanders consume beet on sandwiches and hamburgers, much as a slice of tomato or onion would be found on such a sandwich in the United States. Beet is known as beetroot in these countries, and this term is often used in parts of Europe.” (Goldman & Janick, 2021)

-> Beet in Soup: Borsch

Beet has long been used as a primary ingredient for soup, and borscht is the name of the most well-known example of beet soup. Lee (2018) has suggested that a soup known as borscht may have originated in Ukraine sometime between the fifth and ninth centuries CE, where it was originally made from cow parsnip, Heracleum sphondylium, a common wild plant from the Apiaceae family found in Central Asia and Eastern Europe. Foliage from this plant was fermented and cooked with meat broth, egg, and cream to make a tart soup. This was undoubtedly a peasant food, consumed throughout Eastern Europe by the 15th century. Lee argues that by the 17th century, economic decline and social upheaval caused new ingredients to be introduced to this soup. The Polish-Lithuanian commonwealth included recipes for white borscht, which was made from fermented grain, a green borscht from sorrel or possibly chard leaves, and kvass from rye bread. Fermented cabbage was also introduced. Beet was not used as an ingredient in borscht until possibly the 16th century when more succulent, swollen-rooted beets became available. Lee suggests that beetroot borscht was regularly made by ethnic Ukrainians east of the Dnieper River in the late 17th or early 18th century. Later, potatoes were added. Interestingly, borscht was adopted by Christians for certain fast days, with red borscht consumed on Christmas and white borscht consumed during Lent, and by Jews who used red borscht for Passover. Beet borscht became known as an inexpensive, peasant food in Eastern Europe, as exemplified by the Yiddish phrase Bilig v’borscht, which translates as “inexpensive, like borscht.”” (Goldman & Janick, 2021)

-> Red Pickled Eggs reports that Pennsylvania Dutch make so-called “pickled beet egg”. First, beets are pickled and then removed from the liquid which is saved. Then, hard-boiled eggs are placed in the liquid to marinate until they are red from the colour of the beetroot juice. It is even possible to make wine out of beetroot.

-> Coloured Pancakes

Another favourite dish was coloured pancakes where the beetroot juice was used to colour them.

General Value of Beet Recognised in the Past

Elizabeth Fries Ellet, Henry Bill Publishing Company, 1872 – Cooking, gives us insight into the use of beet not just in the 1800s, but in the decades preceding it.

“Beet-Root is a root of a plant which of late years has been extensively cultivated for the purpose of feeding cattle; the colour which it possesses is easily extracted, for the purpose of tinting various articles employed in cookery. When boiled, it is a beautiful addition to every salad.” (Ellet, 1872) It seems to mingle beetroot and fodder beet in the mid-1800s.

Its Value for Inclusion in Meat Products – Recognised from Antiquity

From the discussions above, it is clear that including the right plant substance in meat products is an excellent approach and this, probably in conjunction with the use of nitrate and nitrite. It is interesting that this value was seen from antiquity. I give a few examples.

-> Beet As Colourant: Elizabeth Fries Ellet (1872)

Beetroot in its relationship with colour, she writes under Savoury Apple Sause, “Pulp the apples, if wanted of a good colour, add to them a little juice of beet-root or cochineal (which is a scale insect in the suborder Sternorrhyncha, from which the natural dye carmine is derived). Season with cayenne pepper, and a glass of vinegar or lemon pickle, taking care not to make it too acid. This will prove a substitute for tomato or sorrel sauce when neither can be obtained; if for the latter a little spinach juice will give it a colour.” (Ellet, 1872) The use of beetroot juice for the purpose of providing colour in a low acidic environment is interesting.

Abbott (1864) links vinegar with beetroot claiming that it makes it more digestible. “Vinegar likewise promotes the digestion of lettuce, celery, and beetroot.”

-> Beet Sugar: A Source of Potash

Sugar beet was a key source of potash, exploited around the world. McQueen notes in a report he compiled for the American Department of Commerce that “the principal sources from the potash of commerce originates are: (1) solid deposits of soluble potash minerals such as carnallite, sylvite, and kainite; (2) seawater, brines and salt lake deposits containing appreciable amounts of potash salts associated with sodium salts; (3) vegetable substances, such as wood ashes, beet-sugar residues, seaweed, and sunflower stalks; (4) animal materials such as wool washings; (5) products resulting from the decay of organic nitrogenous matter, such as Indian nitre; (6) dust carried in flue gases from the manufacture of cement, also blast-furnace dust from the manufacture of iron; and (7) insoluble potash minerals under which may be grouped alunite, feldspar, leucite, muscovite, and glauconite of which contain a considerable quantity of potash.” (McQueen, 1926)

-> Beetroot as a Meat Preservative and the Preservation of Beetroot Itself.

Elizabeth Fries Ellet, in her 1872 publication refers to the fact that in beetroot, the “sugar is the concentrated juice of a plant which grows in hot climates and is also to be obtained from other trees and vegetables, especially from Beet-root. It is used very extensively in cookery, imparting a mellow flavour to all dishes. It is of an antiseptic nature, and ought to be employed more abundantly in preserving animal substances than it is. This condiment was unknown to the ancients who employed honey in the place of it.” (Ellet, 1872) The 1872 reference, again seems to draw little distinction between sugar beet and beetroot. The fact that it assigns antiseptic properties to it and encourages its use for the preservation of meat, in particular, is of the highest interest. The quote in particular calls for a link with the sugar content of the vegetable, linking it to the ancient use of honey.

How they saw this link is elucidated by an American publication from 1902 entitled “The Sugar Beet” with the subheading, “Devoted to the Cultivation and Utilisation of Sugar Beet.” It reports on an article that appeared in the Queensland Agricultural Journal which speaks to the link. It reads thus, “we have in the past year had several opportunities of noticing the effect of sugar on hams. The hams were placed in pickle, if we may so call it, of sugar and molasses. The fresh hindquarters of the pig were first well rubbed with powdered sugar and were then placed in the saccharine solution and left undisturbed for some weeks. When cooked the meat did not present the red and white appearance of the brine-cured article, but more resembled fresh pork. Yet the taste was exactly the same as that of ham, albeit a little sweeter. In connection with this, we learn that experiments have been made, under the direction of the French minister of agriculture, which demonstrate that sugar is a good agent for met preserving and possesses some advantages over salt. It is pointed out that the latter absorbs a portion of the nutritive substance and of the flavour of the meat. When an analysis is made of a solution of salt dissolved in water contained in meat, albuminoid bodies, extractive substances, potassa and phosphoric acids are found. Salt deprives meat of these substances so much the more readily in proportion as it enters the tissues more deeply or acts for a longer time. The result is that the meat, when taken from the saline solution, has lost nutritive elements of genuine importance. Powdered sugar, on the contrary, being less soluble produces less liquid. It forms around the meat a solid crust, which removes very little water from it and does not alter its taste. Thus preserved it is sufficient that the meat is immersed in water before using it.” (The Sugar Beet, 1902)

The author further summarises the Australian report by saying that the report declares that even though this cost a little more than preservation by salt, account must be taken of the final result and of the loss prevented, which offsets the difference in cost between the two preservatives. (The Sugar Beet, 1902)

It not only preserves meat, but its own preservation is impressive. Tallis (1854) makes an interesting comment when he writes about the preservation of vegetables, “generally speaking, their flavour is fresher than that of meats especially in the case of those abounding in saccharine (sugary or sweetness) principle, as beet, carrots, parnsnips, salsify, which preserves to advantage. The more farinaceous (i.e. consisting of starch or containing starch) do not preserve so well, such as green peas, etc., whilst those abounding in volatile oils are hardly worth preservation at all (especially cabbage, turnips, and celery), except as anti-scorbutic.

Future Studies

-> Toxicity

Investigate the following Toxicity report by James A. Duke. 1983. Handbook of Energy Crops. unpublished.

“Feeding sugar beet to sheep has caused renal calculi, composed of uric and phosphoric acids with lime. Fresh leaf may also cause poisoning due to the 1% oxalic acid therein. Leaf may also contain dangerous levels of HCN and/or nitrates and nitrites. Betaine acts as a mild diuretic. Beet pollen can cause hay fever. Sugar appears to have caused dermatitis in two-thirds of the workers in one crystallizing department.”

-> Folk Medicine

List folklore on Beetroot, also listed by James A. Duke. 1983. Handbook of Energy Crops. unpublished.

-> Studies of benefits to human health

The work of Godofredo U. Stuart, Jr.’s listed under benefits to human health and the references under “References” must be studied and incorporated into the overall work on Beetroot in the future.

-> C Botulinum in meat products

Related to the general safety of plant-based curing, CHR Hansen alerted me to two important studies to consider namely:

  • Project no. 18550, doc. no. 37215.3, from 26. October 2006 the Danish Meat Institute indicated that “the worries about the germination and growth of Clostridia spores could not be validated as cooked hams or emulsified sausages are usually stored below 7°C for approximately 1-2 months only.” (CHR Hansen)
  • F.-K. Lücke, who came to the came to the same conclusion in 2003 as the Danish Meat Institute. (document 160 , “Mitteilungsblatts der Bundesanstalt für Fleischforschung”, Kulmbach, p. 95-104).

-> Future studies with sea beet to discover its likely uses in pre-history

I would, at a future time, get sea beet to examine its uses in pre-history. It can be found along the German coast as per the following work. Sarah Driessen, Matthias Pohl, Detlef Bartsch. (2021) RAPD-PCR analysis of the genetic origin of sea beet (Beta vulgaris ssp. maritima) at Germany’s Baltic Sea coast, Basic and Applied Ecology, Volume 2, Issue 4, 2001, Pages 341-349, ISSN 1439-1791, (

-> Betalains in Meat formulations

When considering betalains in meat processing Ceclu (2020) offers caution when he states:

  • Betalains are susceptible to pH, oxygen, metal ions, temperature, water activity, exposure to light and enzymatic activities (1 and 2 below);
  • High temperature, pH changes or enzyme presence could convert betanin to betanidin.

In this regard, three works must be consulted (3 below):

  1. Herbach KM, Stintzing FC, Carle R (2006) Betalain stability and degradation Structural and chromatic aspects. Journal of Food Science 71: 41-50.
  2. Sekiguchi H, Ozeki Y, Sasaki N (2013) Biosynthesis and regulation of betalains in red beet. In: B Neelwarne, Red beet biotechnology – food and pharmaceutical applications. Springer Science+Business Media, New York, 45-54.
  3. Wiczkowski W, Romaszko E, Szawara-Nowak D, Piskula MK (2018) The impact of the matrix of red beet products and interindividual variability on betacyanins bioavailability in humans. Food Res Int 108: 530-538.

-> Anti-inflammatory activity of betalains: A comprehensive review

-> Current Knowledge on Beetroot Bioactive Compounds: Role of Nitrate and Betalains in Health and Disease

-> Nutritional, Bioactive and Physicochemical Characteristics of Different Beetroot Formulations

Further Reading

Beta maritima. The origin of beets: buy book and study


Edward Abbott, (1864) The English and Australian Cookery Book. Cookery for the Many, as well as for the “Upper Ten Thousands.” By an Australian Aristologist. London: Sampson, Low, Son and Marston, 14, Ludgate Hill.

Added Sugars, American Heart Association

Muhammet İrfan Aksu, Ebru Erdemir, Emre Turan, İhsan Güngör Sat. (2020) Effects of red beet extracts on protein and lipid oxidation, colour, microbial, sensory properties and storage stability of Turkish pastırma. Journal of Stored Products Research, Volume 89, 2020, 101721, ISSN 0022-474X, (

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CHR Hansen: Pamphlet – Natural curing without added nitrite and personal correspondence, 2021 and 2022.

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FSA. (2008) Nitrate in vegetables Scientific Opinion of the Panel on Contaminants in the Food chain. The EFSA Journal (2008) 689, 1-79.

Goldman, Irwin L. and Janick, Jules (2021). Review – Evolution of Root Morphology in Table Beet: Historical and Iconographic; Frontiers in Plant Science;

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