Broccoli is a green plant belonging to the cabbage family. It originated in Italy around 2,000 years ago. The name is derived from the Italian plural "broccolo," which means ''the flowering crest of a cabbage.'' Broccoli is classified in the Italica cultivar group of the species Brassica oleracea.
Broccoli stemmed from careful breeding of leafy cole crops in the Northern Mediterranean during the sixth century. It was brought to England in the mid-18th century by Peter Scheemakers. Broccoli was introduced into the United States by Italian immigrants in the 20th century. The use of broccoli has spread across the world in the last 50 years.