Native North American varieties are known as Vitis labrusca. They include Concord and Niagara, which are native to Ontario. Traditional European cultivars, including wine grapes, are Vitis vinifera. In addition there are thousands of hybrid varieties.
This fact sheet deals with table grapes among the Vitis labrusca types. These include the blue Concord, the black Fredonia and Sovereign Coronation Seedless.
Ten uncooked table grapes contain 15 calories.
Grapes have been cultivated since before recorded history, probably originating between the Caspian Sea and Persia (now Iran).
While they were eaten raw, from early times most were destined for wine-making. They soon spread throughout the Middle East and to ancient Greece and Rome. Today they are grown throughout the world - from Australia, New Zealand and South Africa to North and South America and much of Europe.
Buying and storing
Quality table grapes should be plump, smooth and have even full colouring. They should be firmly attached to the stem, which should be flexible, not brittle, and have light green or straw colouring.
They will keep for a week in a refrigerator at 32°F to 35°F (0°C to 2°C), loosely wrapped or in ventilated plastic in a single layer.
Wash just before serving (if done earlier, the fruit will deteriorate).
Eat them just as they are, or as part of a fruit-and-cheese plate. Cooked, grapes may be served in a variety of desserts, as juice or jelly fruit.