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The first raisins

It's probably safe to say that raisins were discovered by man the first time he found them accidentally dried out on the vine. But it took several hundreds of years before he determined which of the 8,000 varieties of grape genus would produce the best raisins.
Historians tell us the ancient Phoenicians and Armenians took the first steps in perfecting viticulture, the process of grape growing and selection.
Between 120-900 B.C. the Phoenicians started colonial vineyards in the areas of Malaga and Valencia (Spain), and in Corinth (Greece). About this same time, the Armenians founded their vineyards in Persia (Turkey, Iran, Iraq). These bountiful growing areas had the perfect climate for making raisins - and were also close to Greece and Rome, the first markets for raisins.
Muscat raisins - oversized, with seeds, and a fruity, full flavor were the primary crop in Malaga and Valencia. Currants - tiny, seedless, tangy raisins - were planted in Corinth, Greece, where historians believe they got their name.

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