#15: Peanut Nut

The Question

McAnswers McQuaid,

Since you are clearly an expert peanutologist, perhaps you can help me with a problem I encountered in lab recently. For ecology lab, my group was feeding different nuts to squirrels (optimal foraging experiment) and we counted the number of nuts taken in certain amounts of time. Then we realized … we had no idea what the definition of “one peanut” is! Is one peanut the edible ball in the shell, or the entire encased nut? Keep in mind, that the occasional whole peanut can have one or two (and sometimes three!) edible pieces inside of it.

Baffled Becky
Melbourne, FL

Comment by Becky — 10/27/2004 @ 12:26 am

The Answer

This is an incredible question with an incredible answer.

The truth is, “peanut” refers to the shell and everything in it. Inside the shell there may be one, two, or three “nuts” or “seeds”. No lie – the edible piece that we get from Planter’s is a peanut nut or peanut seed.

As a side note, anyone who performs “optimal foraging experiments” is awesome in my book. A+!

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