LYNN NEARY, host:
If the spinach industry is having trouble, consider the dilemma facing parents. Spinach was never an easy sell. It's exactly those characteristics that make spinach healthy - all that leafy greenness - that makes it inherently unappetizing to so many children. And now of course they have an excuse not to eat it.
Mom! Spinach can make you sick! It's an excuse that can last a lifetime, or at least the span of a childhood.
As far as kids are concerned, the statute of limitations on spinach may never be up. Parents who believe it's a must in any diet may have to find very clever ways to disguise it in the future. They may even have to resort to a song.
(Soundbite of song "You've Got to Eat Your Spinach Baby")
Unidentified Woman (Singer): (Singing) You've got to eat your spinach, baby, it'll give you lots of TNT, for whenever you're caressing me, then you'll need every vitamin from A to Z.
NEARY: If you do manage to get your kids to eat spinach again, go to our Web site, NPR.org, for some expert advice on washing greens, grapes - even bananas.