Why Is Rhubarb So Expensive?

Rhubarb is a unique and delicious vegetable that has been enjoyed for centuries. It has a tart flavor that is often used in pies, jams, and other desserts. But why is rhubarb so expensive? In this article, we will explore the reasons why rhubarb is so expensive and how you can get the most out of your rhubarb purchase.

What is Rhubarb?

Rhubarb is a perennial vegetable that is native to Asia and Europe. It is a member of the Polygonaceae family, which includes plants such as buckwheat and sorrel. The plant has large, fleshy, edible stalks that are usually red or green in color. The leaves of the plant are not edible and contain oxalic acid, which can be toxic if consumed in large quantities.

Why is Rhubarb So Expensive?

There are several factors that contribute to the high cost of rhubarb. The first is the fact that rhubarb is a seasonal crop. It is typically harvested in the spring and early summer months, and is not available year-round. This means that the supply of rhubarb is limited, which drives up the price.

Another factor is the labor-intensive nature of growing rhubarb. The plants require a lot of care and attention, and the harvesting process is time-consuming. This adds to the cost of rhubarb, as farmers must pay their workers for their time and effort.

Finally, rhubarb is a delicate crop that is prone to disease and pests. This means that farmers must take extra precautions to protect their crops, which can add to the cost of production.

How to Get the Most Out of Your Rhubarb Purchase

If you want to get the most out of your rhubarb purchase, there are a few things you can do. First, buy rhubarb when it is in season. This will ensure that you are getting the freshest and most flavorful rhubarb available.

Second, buy in bulk. Buying in bulk will save you money in the long run, as you will be able to get more rhubarb for your money.

Finally, store your rhubarb properly. Rhubarb should be stored in the refrigerator, where it will keep for up to two weeks. If you plan to freeze your rhubarb, make sure to blanch it first. This will help to preserve its flavor and texture.


Rhubarb is a unique and delicious vegetable that has been enjoyed for centuries. However, it is also an expensive vegetable due to its seasonal nature, labor-intensive growing process, and susceptibility to disease and pests. To get the most out of your rhubarb purchase, buy it when it is in season, buy in bulk, and store it properly. With these tips, you can enjoy the delicious flavor of rhubarb without breaking the bank.