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In broad terms, a fruit is a structure of a plant that contains its seeds.

The term has different meanings dependent on context. In non-technical usage, such as food preparation, fruit normally means the fleshy seed-associated structures of certain plants that are sweet and edible in the raw state, such as apples, oranges, grapes, strawberries, juniper berries and bananas, or the similar-looking structures in other plants, even if they are non-edible or non-sweet in the raw state, such as lemons and olives. Seed-associated structures that do not fit these informal criteria are usually called by other names, such as vegetables, pods, nut, ears and cones.

In biology (botany), a "fruit" is a part of a flowering plant that derives from specific tissues of the flower, mainly one or more ovaries. Taken strictly, this definition excludes many structures that are "fruits" in the common sense of the term, such as those produced by non-flowering plants (like juniper berries, which are the seed-containing female cones of conifers[1]), and fleshy fruit-like growths that develop from other plant tissues close to the fruit (accessory fruit, or more rarely false fruit or pseudocarp), such as cashew fruits. Often the botanical fruit s only part of the common fruit, or is merely adjacent to it.