Harvest Public Media story
8:00 pm
Wed November 27, 2013

Canned pumpkins aren’t grown for their looks.

Field of Libby’s Select pumpkins, a hybrid of the Dickinson pumpkin. The inside is orange but the outside is closer to beige, similar to a butternut squash.

This Thanksgiving, hungry families all over the country will finish off their holiday meal with a little slice of the Midwest. That’s because the vast majority of all pumpkin that comes from a can and winds up in a pie got its start on a vine in Illinois.

Pumpkin patches are popular destinations for families seeking fall fun and you’ll find roadside farm stands all over the country. But pumpkins are big business in Illinois, where farmers feed canning factories hungry for a special kind of pumpkin that looks nothing like those you see on Halloween.

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