Beets are members of the Chenopodiaceae (or Amaranthaceae) family, also known as the beet or Goosefoot family, which includes other cool-season crops like spinach, Swiss chard, orach and quinoa. The beet, or beetroot, is an ancient crop dating back to 2000 B.C. Beets were likely domesticated in the Mediterranean region, taken to Babylonia around the eighth century B.C. and introduced into China in 850 A.D. The Romans ate beets in the 3rd and 4th centuries, as they were believed to promote good health.
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The LSU AgCenter and the LSU College of Agriculture