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|Cultivars of maize|
| Zea mays|
Maize (called corn in some countries) is a member of the grass family Poaceae. It is a cereal grain that was first grown by people in ancient Central America. It is now the third most important cereal crop in the world. It is a leafy stalk whose kernels contain seeds inside. It is an angiosperm, which means that its seeds are enclosed inside a fruit or shell. It is used as a food staple by many people in Mexico, Central and South America and parts of Africa. In Europe and the rest of North America, maize is grown mostly for use as animal feed. In Canada and the United States, maize is commonly referred to as "corn". In recent years corn has become an important part in a majority of American foods due to the use of corn starch.