Pulses for Consumers

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What are “pulses?”

Pulses are defined to be the dry form of beans, peas, lentils and chickpeas. Although not strictly a pulse, soybeans are included for the purpose of cooperation among farmers and ease of presenting information to consumers. There are a number of other pulse seeds such as faba beans, but they can fairly be included under the umbrella of “beans.”

Different countries (and sometimes different organizations) will put a different spin on one kind of pulse food over another, according to their own trade advantage. But the actual science is clear: there’s no such thing as a bad pulse.

The distinction of the dry seed from fresh is an important one. So the split peas you buy dry bagged at the supermarket are pulses.  The fresh peas you pick from your garden and put in a salad are not pulses.