At New Mexico State University (NMSU), the jujube or “Chinese date” has proved a hot topic around the College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences. A team of researchers at the university have been hard at work trying to ascertain, analyze and understand local consumers’ perceptions of the jujube fruit. Simultaneously, an agricultural effort was made to develop and catalog drought-tolerant jujube cultivars for high desert farming. The exceptionally nutritious fruit boasts a healthy serving of vitamin C and a low glycemic index but the jujube’s small, oval shape and brown color don’t fit neatly into the American concept of big, colorful fruit. NMSU’s Agriculture Science Center hosts an AmeriZao jujube tasting workshop in Los Lunas on Friday, Sept. 28 from 2 to 4pm. Learn more at bit.ly/AmeriZao.