Ninety-nine percent of pumpkins sold in the United States are used for decoration — but it's still a profitable industry. The American pumpkin industry is valued at more than $150 million US Dollars (USD). Perhaps unsurprisingly, about 80 percent of pumpkin sales in the U.S. occur during the month of October.
More facts about pumpkins:
- The iconic Jack-o'-lantern actually didn't start out as a pumpkin. It was an Irish tradition to carve turnips, beets or rutabagas in order to frighten away spirits on Halloween. When Irish people immigrated to America, they brought the tradition with them but were forced to use pumpkins because there were no turnips readily available at the time.
- Almost every part of the pumpkin is edible, including the seeds, flesh and flowers, which can be battered and fried, added to soup or used as an edible garnish.
- The top pumpkin-producing states in the U.S. are Illinois, Ohio, Pennsylvania and California.