Lettuce is an annual plant of the daisy family, Asteraceae. It is very often grown as a leaf vegetable, but sometimes for its stem and seeds. Lettuce is most often used for salads, although it is also seen in other kinds of food, such as soups, sandwiches and wraps; it can also be grilled. One variety, the woju , or asparagus lettuce is grown for its stems, which are either raw or cooked. In addition to its main use as a leafy green, it has also gathered religious and medicinal significance over centuries of human consumption. Europe and North America is the main market for lettuce, but by the late 20th century the consumption of lettuce had spread throughout the world. World production of lettuce and chicory for calendar year 2013 was 24.9 million tonnes, over half of which came from China.
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