Louisiana isn’t famous for its grapefruit, but that could change after a Slidell couple’s world-record-setting harvest.
Mary Beth and Doug Meyer grew a monster fruit weighing more than 7 pounds 14 ounces and measuring 28.75 inches around.
Guinness World Records said the super citrus broke two records and is the world’s heaviest and largest grapefruit by circumference.
The squat, pumpkin-shaped fruit is about the size of a regulation basketball and weighs as much as a baby or a chihuahua.
Officials from the Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry were on hand to take official measurements when the Meyers cut the fruit in January and Commissioner Mike Strain presented them with the official Guinness certificate on Tuesday.
The Meyers’ grandchildren struggled to hold the grapefruit during the ceremony.
“It’s been an adventure for our family to discover this grapefruit and watch it grow and to measure every couple of weeks and thinking that we were going to achieve a possible world record,” Doug Meyer said in a video posted on the Department’s Facebook page.
The Meyers’ grapefruit beat the previous record that was set in 2006 in Brazil. That grapefruit weighed 7 pounds, 1 ounce and was 27.5 inches in circumference.
The Meyers say their secret is the fairy garden that their grandchildren made around the base of their 10-year-old grapefruit tree.
“It truly was an exciting family event for us and not something we set out to do, but something that just occurred by the magic of the fairies,” Mary Beth Meyer said. “We did nothing special to grow this grapefruit, so we attribute it to the fairies.”
They have kept the grapefruit in the freezer to preserve it, so they can take it to schools.