Peanut,Arachis hypogaea, is an herbaceous annual plant in the family Fabaceae grown for its oil and edible nuts. Peanut plants are small, usually erect, thin stemmed plants with feather-like leaves. The leaves are arranged in alternate pairs and have leaf-like attachments near the stalk. The peanut plant produces yellow, orange, cream or white flowers which produce 'pegs', characteristic floral structures which sink into the ground to grow the pod. The pods can reach up to 10 cm (4 in) in length and can contain between 1 and 5 seeds. The peanut plant can reach 0.6 m (2 ft) in height depending on the variety and as an annual plant, survives only one growing season.
Most commercially grown peanuts are used for the extraction of their oil which is used in cooking. The by product of oil extraction is a pressed cake which is used as an animal feed and also in the production of peanut flour. Raw kernels are also commonly roasted and eaten as a snack food.
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