Why are there so many varieties of apples yet other forms of produce may only have 2 or 3 varieties (or none at all)?


If I go to the grocery store I’ll see multiple bins with different types of apples, but if I look at the banana section it’s just a bin of same variety bananas. Why?

In: 5

Apples can be grown everywhere. Bananas require special climate. There actually a lit of varios banans types, however most of them are too expencive to transport

[The History Guy](https://youtu.be/Isq1-htLiEk) did a great 5-10 minute history of apples. Did you know there are *thousands* of apple variety? In the US, there is a legend – that turns out to be true – of a [guy named Johnny Appleseed](https://youtu.be/MKs0VJbB0R4) who planted apple trees and gave out apples for others to grow all across the US.

In apples there are a variety of varieties that folks use for different things.

Just like you have white onions, yellow onions, sweet onions, green onions…. Or red peppers, orange/yellow peppers, green peppers, mini peppers, jalapeño, habanero, Serrano…. Or russet or Yukon gold, or baby red potatoes…. Or Roma tomatoes or beefsteak or cherry…..

But some produce has become particularly popular or comoditized in just a few similar variations for various reasons. Bananas for example are a clone of the variety that transports well and folks are familiar with. Carrots used to be all sorts of colors, but orange settled into popularity and the different varieties grown are all pretty similar in form and flavor – and growth so they’re good commercial variants.

Most produce there are dozens if not hundreds of varieties available, but they don’t all transport or sell well at retail. Of the thousands of apple varieties, you still only get a handful in the store.

As the other commenters have said, some types of food plant have a lot of varieties because people specifically bred and crossbred a bunch of different kinds. People did this for a LOT of different plants too, but not all varieties of fruits are able to be grown or transported efficiently. Usually only the types of crops easiest to mass-grow become commonplace.

As another example of a lot of fruit varieties, [every single citrus fruit ever came from 3 initial species, the citron, pomelo, and mandarin.](https://www.atlasobscura.com/articles/grapefruit-history-and-drug-interactions) These have been crossbred and selectively bred into familiar fruits such as lemons, limes, oranges, and grapefruits, but there are *tons* more that aren’t commonly grown in mass quantities.

For a non fruit example, [cabbage, kale, and broccoli, as well as various other veggies,](https://www.vox.com/xpress/2014/8/6/5974989/kale-cauliflower-cabbage-broccoli-same-plant) were all bred from the same ancestor veggie.

Bananas are a more fragile fruit. Also a few varieties available. Plantain is a variety.

Also all bananas we get now are cloned. A fungal infection killed off the most popular variety.