The answer to this question is actually a bit more complicated, and some differences between the botanists and the food industry about the term “vegetables” make it harder to figure out the difference between vegetables and fruits. In a simple definition, fruit can be considered as an ovary of a plant, meaning that it contains seeds; while a vegetable is a plant part, and although some vegetables are used for reproduction, they do not contain seeds.
Some typical examples of fruits include apricots, blueberries, and apples. Although some people call tomatoes, cucumbers, squash and zucchini vegetables (because they are just delicious, but not sweet), they can also be classified as fruits from a botanical point of view….For the convenience of labelling in the food industry, it is usually based on whether there is sweetness or goodness as a criterion for distinguishing fruits and vegetables, not based on botanical criteria.
On the other hand, vegetables are only plant parts such as flowers, roots or leaves. For example, broccoli is a vegetable in the form of flowers, and celery is a vegetable of the roots. In theory, potatoes are tubers, not plant roots. They are designed specifically for plant storage and nutrition; roots also have the ability to germinate into new plants. Typical examples of leafy vegetables are spinach, cabbage and lettuce.
In essence, the difference between fruits and vegetables is already clear. If there are seeds, they are fruits, not vegetables. However, there are some interesting facts about fruits. For example, all nuts can theoretically be classified as fruits, because they are also plant ovary, but we eat seeds instead of the surrounding flesh. In addition, cereals are also fruits because they are also large seeds.
Some botanists don’t like the term “vegetables” because they think it’s vague and the definition is inaccurate. However, as people are used to using this name, discussions about “vegetables or fruits” will continue.