You could argue that avocados are iconic of this generation. They dominate Instagram, feature on every self-respecting Brunch menu and are supposedly the reason why so many millennials can’t get on the housing market.

So how did this humble green fruit rise to fame? 

Its origins lie in Mexico, where it is known to have been consumed in the region for thousands of years. It’s believed that as early as 5000 BC, indigenous South American people were growing and eating avocados just as they are.

The avocado may have historically been a dietary staple in various regions such as South America (and rightly so, because it’s incredible), but it took some time for the West to recognise its star quality. 


When introduced to the UK in the 1960’s, customers were left baffled by the ‘avocado pear’ sold in Sainsburys and M&S. Consumers didn’t understand that avocados need to be ripened and that they couldn’t be poached like a regular pear.

The 1970’s saw the avo’s first shot at superstardom in the West. This modest fruit inspired many green-hued and badly judged kitchens and bathrooms, yet its tasty potential was left unrecognised. You could probably find a rock-hard avocado half hiding under some prawn cocktail at a dinner party, or an ‘avocado ritz’, but sadly, avocado toast would be nowhere to be found in the UK.  

From around 2013 and onwards, the avocado has seen a renaissance and has become the best-loved Brunch ingredient.  At the time of writing, #avocado has over 8 million aesthetically pleasing posts on Instagram.  Avocado cafés are popping up all over the place,  from London to Amsterdam. You can buy pretty much anything with an avocado on it from Urban Outfitters. Apparently, the UK bought more avocados than oranges in 2015.


Why are we so obsessed with this creamy fruit?

The easy answer is that it is quite simply delicious. The more complicated answer is that we have been subject to long drawn out marketing campaign. From 1995 to 2013, British PR firm Richmond Towers worked to increase avocado sales in the UK. From consumer education to pushing the health benefits of avocado and christening it a ‘superfood’, the campaign was part of the avocado’s rise to fame in Britain.

Regardless, whether it is mashed into guacamole, smashed with chilli on toast or used as a receptacle for lattes, the avo has become a staple on our menus and it is unlikely to go anywhere.