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Do You Live in a Kale-Crazed State?

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Patrizia Savarese via Getty Images


Did you know that kale is a cruciferous vegetable loaded with antioxidants and nutrients? Well if you live in the Northeast, or on the West Coast, you probably do because people there can't shut up about this leafy green. They put it in their smoothies, grow it in their gardens, serve it in the form of crispy kale "chips" at parties, and talk endlessly about it. Consequently, if you live in the Great Plains of Deep South you likely can't find kale on a menu or at the grocery store.

The real estate search site Estately set out to to determine where America's kale enthusiasts are located, no doubt a rapidly growing segment of the home-buying market. So which states provide an environment where a kale aficionado would feel most at home? Estately crunched the numbers to determine which states are most and least enthusiastic about kale. To do this Estately used these five criteria:
  1. Level of interest in kale amongst each state's Facebook users (source:  Facebook)
  2. Frequency of online searches for "kale" (source:  Google Trends)
  3. Amount of acres of kale harvested per capita for each state (source: USDA Census of Agriculture)
  4. People with the last name "Kale" per capita (source: White Pages)
  5. Percentage of restaurants with kale on the menu in each state's largest city (source:  Yelp)
Each state was ranked from 1-50 for each the criteria, and the combined rankings were to determine the final rankings. The numbers below each set of criteria represent the state's ranking. A "1" indicates the most and "50" indicates the fewest.

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In the end, Vermont took the title of The #1 U.S. State for Kale Enthusiasts, which isn't much of a surprise since they were just deemed The #1 U.S. State for Hippies in a recent study by Estately. Mississippi came in last, which is also no surprise, because Mississippi always comes in last. It's the only constant in these types of list.

Facebook users in Maine proudly post about their love for this leafy green, coming in first for Facebook interest. However, it's only a paltry 0.79 percent of Maine's users. No data could be found on the percentage of Farmville users who plant kale.

When it comes to kale farming, Georgia grew the most per capita of any state. If we'd measured it by total acres harvested Georgia (755 acres) would have come in second behind California (1,680 acres), but still ahead of New Jersey (537 acres), Texas (524 acres), and North Carolina (428 acres).

If you want to meet someone with the last name "kale" your odds are highest in Montana, but if that name frightens you, then New Mexico is largely devoid of anyone with the last name "kale."

If the sight of kale on the menu overjoys you, Washington state is your culinary wonderland. A whopping 8.5 percent of restaurants in the Evergreen State serve this leafy green, which more than tops last place North Dakota, which apparently prefers salads made with ice berg lettuce and thousand island dressing.

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