Which Continent Was The Original Home To The Humble Potato?

Which Continent Was The Original Home To The Humble Potato
How the humble potato changed the world (Image credit: Ernesto Benavides/Getty Images ) A staple food for cultures across the globe, the tuber has emerged as a nutritional giant and the friend of peasants, rulers and sages. Even today, its possibilities are endless. I In his 1957 essay collection Mythologies, the French philosopher and literary critic Roland Barthes called chips ( la frite ), a food that comes from a crop native to the Americas, “patriotic” and “the alimentary sign of Frenchness”.

  1. Just a century earlier, a potato disease prompted a famine that halved Ireland’s population in a few years, producing a decades-long cascading effect of social and economic turmoil.
  2. And as you read these lines, the world’s leading potato producers today are China, India, Russia and Ukraine, respectively.

Despite these nations’ intimate and complicated relationships with potatoes, and how intertwined their societies and economies are with them, none can truly call them native. The humble potato was domesticated in the South American Andes some 8,000 years ago and was only brought to Europe in the mid-1500s, from where it spread west and northwards, back to the Americas, and beyond. Indigenous communities in the Andes still have a close relationship with potatoes (Credit: International Potato Center) “Despite its origins in the Andes, it’s an incredibly successful global food,” said food historian Rebecca Earle, who’s tracing the potato’s planetary journey in a forthcoming book called Feeding the People: The Politics of the Potato,

“It’s grown practically everywhere in the world, and practically everywhere, people consider it one of ‘our foods’.” For the rest of the world beyond the Andes, the potato might not be autochthonous, but it feels local. Earle calls it the “world’s most successful immigrant”, as its origin has become unrecognisable for producers and consumers everywhere.

Idaho farmers in the US and gnocchi-loving Italians will claim the potato as much as any Peruvian, because its story is not only that of a country or of a region, but an account of how humans have reconfigured their relationship with land and food within a few generations.

What continent is the potato originally from?

Potato
Potato cultivars appear in a variety of colors, shapes, and sizes.
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade : Tracheophytes
Clade : Angiosperms
Clade : Eudicots
Clade : Asterids
Order: Solanales
Family: Solanaceae
Genus: Solanum
Species: S. tuberosum
Binomial name
Solanum tuberosum L.

The potato is a starchy tuber of the plant Solanum tuberosum and is a root vegetable and a fruit native to the Americas, The plant is a perennial in the nightshade family Solanaceae, Wild potato species can be found from the southern United States to southern Chile.

  • The potato was originally believed to have been domesticated by Native Americans independently in multiple locations, but later genetic studies traced a single origin, in the area of present-day southern Peru and extreme northwestern Bolivia,
  • Potatoes were domesticated there approximately 7,000–10,000 years ago, from a species in the Solanum brevicaule complex.

In the Andes region of South America, where the species is indigenous, some close relatives of the potato are cultivated. Potatoes were introduced to Europe from the Americas by the Spanish in the second half of the 16th century. Today they are a staple food in many parts of the world and an integral part of much of the world’s food supply,

  1. As of 2014, potatoes were the world’s fourth-largest food crop after maize (corn), wheat, and rice,
  2. Following millennia of selective breeding, there are now over 5,000 different types of potatoes,
  3. Over 99% of potatoes presently cultivated worldwide descend from varieties that originated in the lowlands of south-central Chile,

The importance of the potato as a food source and culinary ingredient varies by region and is still changing. It remains an essential crop in Europe, especially Northern and Eastern Europe, where per capita production is still the highest in the world, while the most rapid expansion in production since 2000 has occurred in southern and eastern Asia, with China and India leading the world in overall production as of 2018.

Where was the first potato born?

The potato has been a bigger part of world history than most people might realize. It’s one of the most important agricultural crops worldwide, accounting for 368 million tons produced. It’s considered the 5th most important agricultural crop worldwide, behind corn, wheat, sugar cane, and rice, and the most important non-grain food product on earth.

Despite the importance, the potato seldom gets the fanfare it deserves, other than the occasional joke, anecdotal stories and a few nursery rhymes. Well, those of us who work in the potato industry tend to think a little different than most people. At Potandon Produce, everyone is a “potato person” or an “onion person,” and there is a wealth of untapped potato trivia, history, and even a joke or two you might not have heard about the perennial Solanum tuberosum, or the common potato.

Let’s take a trip back in time to see how the potato began, how it evolved, and what it meant to the world along the way and hopefully you’ll learn enough to call yourself a “potato person” too. The earliest accounts known of potatoes being cultivated date back to the Incan Indians in Peru sometime between 8000 BC and 5000 BC in the High Andes Mountains.

There are some who speculate that potatoes grew in the wild as far back as 10,000 BC. But, since record-keeping usually took a back seat to more important things like food, shelter, and water, we’ll never know the exact year, it’s enough to say that potatoes go back a long way. The Incas were also the first dehydrators and they preserved their potatoes for storage by dehydrating and mashing them into a substance they named chuñu.

Chuñu could be stored for up to a decade, providing the local community with insurance in case of natural disaster. With the arrival of the Spanish Conquistador’s in 1532, the Peruvian potato was about to make history. While searching for gold, the Spanish employed Incan men as miners, and observed them eating chuñu.

  1. As time passed, they adopted chuñu as part of their ships provisioning and they took them back to Spain on return voyages over the next 40 years.
  2. Some Spanish farmers cultivated potatoes as livestock feed.
  3. From Spain, potatoes slowly spread to Italy and other European countries during the late 1500’s but the amount of suspicion and contempt for the potato was evident everywhere in Europe since its origins were from a heathen society.

Sailors saw the value in potatoes and cultivated them along the coastlines, and in turn carried them to ports around the known world, where they became a food source for the starving and destitute. Most of the sol-called civilized people considered potatoes to be unfit for human consumption.

Where did the potato have its origin?

Stories About the Origin of Potatoes: Tubers Have Been Around For Thousands of Years – Potatoes have an incredibly rich and interesting history. For thousands of years, they were cultivated by the Incas in Peru. The earliest archaeological evidence exists on the shores of Lake Titicaca from roughly 400 BCE! Potatoes started quite small and narrow—kind of like our fingerlings, just a little gnarlier. Which Continent Was The Original Home To The Humble Potato The Incas learned how to preserve this durable veggie for storage by dehydrating and mashing them into a substance called chuñu. They could store it for up to 10 years, and it provided great insurance against crop failures. The Incas had a great reverence for potatoes, and thought that they made childbirth easier, as well as used them to treat injuries.

See also:  How Long Can You Keep Homemade Potato Salad?

Did the potato originate in South America?

Wild Relatives of Potato The cultivated potato is native to South America, and its centers of origin and diversity are located in the Andes mountain.

Is the potato native to Europe?

Originating from the highlands of the Andes, South America, potatoes were introduced to Europe in the sixteenth century. They were initially popular in Spain because they provided cheap sustenance for the poor. It wasn’t long before they were in demand throughout the continent as a food that was easy to grow and highly nutritious.

  • Today, potatoes are a staple for people all over Europe.
  • Sandy Knapp, a Museum life sciences researcher, worked with colleagues from the Max Planck Institute in Tübingen, Germany, (MPI Tübingen) to trace the history of genetic change in potatoes after their introduction to Europe.
  • ‘We sequenced the DNA of 88 specimens ranging in date from 1650 to the present,’ says Sandy.

‘These included modern potatoes and historical samples from the Museum, as well as herbarium collected by Darwin during his voyage of the Beagle,’ A herbarium is a collection of plant species – many of the six million specimens in the Museum’s botanical collections are found in herbaria.

Are potatoes native to North America?

How the humble potato changed the world (Image credit: Ernesto Benavides/Getty Images ) A staple food for cultures across the globe, the tuber has emerged as a nutritional giant and the friend of peasants, rulers and sages. Even today, its possibilities are endless. I In his 1957 essay collection Mythologies, the French philosopher and literary critic Roland Barthes called chips ( la frite ), a food that comes from a crop native to the Americas, “patriotic” and “the alimentary sign of Frenchness”.

Just a century earlier, a potato disease prompted a famine that halved Ireland’s population in a few years, producing a decades-long cascading effect of social and economic turmoil. And as you read these lines, the world’s leading potato producers today are China, India, Russia and Ukraine, respectively.

Despite these nations’ intimate and complicated relationships with potatoes, and how intertwined their societies and economies are with them, none can truly call them native. The humble potato was domesticated in the South American Andes some 8,000 years ago and was only brought to Europe in the mid-1500s, from where it spread west and northwards, back to the Americas, and beyond. Indigenous communities in the Andes still have a close relationship with potatoes (Credit: International Potato Center) “Despite its origins in the Andes, it’s an incredibly successful global food,” said food historian Rebecca Earle, who’s tracing the potato’s planetary journey in a forthcoming book called Feeding the People: The Politics of the Potato,

“It’s grown practically everywhere in the world, and practically everywhere, people consider it one of ‘our foods’.” For the rest of the world beyond the Andes, the potato might not be autochthonous, but it feels local. Earle calls it the “world’s most successful immigrant”, as its origin has become unrecognisable for producers and consumers everywhere.

Idaho farmers in the US and gnocchi-loving Italians will claim the potato as much as any Peruvian, because its story is not only that of a country or of a region, but an account of how humans have reconfigured their relationship with land and food within a few generations.

Who brought potatoes back to Europe?

Basque fishermen from Spain used potatoes as ships’ stores for their voyages across the Atlantic in the 16th century, and introduced the tuber to western Ireland, where they landed to dry their cod.

Who brought the potato to England?

Potatoes in Great Britain – What do fish and chips, crisps, and bangers and mash have in common? They’re all staples of traditional British cuisine that feature the humble potato. English explorer Sir Francis Drake discovered potatoes during his first, and the world’s second-ever, circumnavigation of the world in the late 16 th century in Latin America.

Where was the first potato planted in the US?

18th Century A.D. – 1719 – Potatoes had been introduced to the United States several times throughout the 1600s. They were not widely grown for almost a century until 1719, when they were planted in Londonderry, New Hampshire, by Scotch-Irish immigrants, and from there spread across the nation.1771 – Antoine-Augustin Parmentier (1737-1813), a French military chemist and botanist, won a contest sponsored by the Academy of Besancon to find a food “capable of reducing the calamities of famine” with his study of the potato called Chemical Examination of the Potato,

According to historical account, he was taken prisoner five times by the Prussians during the Seven Years’ War (1756-1763) and obliged to survive on a diet of potatoes. He also served dinners at which all courses were made of potatoes. Many French potato dishes now bear his name today. In 1785, Parmentier persuades Louis XVI (1754–1793), King of France, to encourage cultivation of potatoes.

The King let him plant 100 useless acres outside Paris, France in potatoes with troops keeping the field heavily guarded. This aroused public curiosity and the people decided that anything so carefully guarded must be valuable. One night Parmentier allowed the guards to go off duty, and the local farmers, as he had hoped, went into the field, confiscated the potatoes and planted them on their own farms.

  1. From this small start, the habit of growing and eating potatoes spread.
  2. It is said that Marie Antoinette (1755-1793), Queen of France and married to Louis XVI, often pinned potato flowers in her curls.
  3. Because of her, ladies of the era wore potato blossoms in their hair.1774 – Russian peasant refused to have anything to do with the potato until the mid 1700s.

Frederick the Great (1712-1786) sent free potatoes to the starving peasants after the famine of 1774, but they refused to touch them until soldiers were sent to persuade them.

Where do potatoes grow in the world?

Production – Potatoes remain the top vegetable crop in the United States. They are grown commercially in 30 states, but Idaho grows more potatoes than any other state, followed by Washington. North Dakota, Wisconsin, and Colorado are also leading producers of potatoes.

See also:  How Do I Fix Potato Salad With Undercooked Potatoes?

What vegetables originated in Europe?

The fruit and vegetable “Who am I” game 1. Sometimes people make a juice out of me, but don’t drink me too often or you’ll turn orange! 2. When Columbus landed in the new world, he thought he was in India so he called the natives “Indians.” He was told to bring back spices, so guess what he called me? 3.

  • In Germany, people who first grew me tried to eat my leaves, but they tasted terrible.
  • They almost gave up on me till they tried my tubers! 4.
  • When you cook me, I will weep and sigh.5.
  • I used to be called a love apple, and people thought I was poisonous.
  • Now I’m on your pizza.6.
  • Russians ferment me to make Vodka.

Hint: I’m not a grape.7. I was taken out of the wild in Europe and turned into all of the following: kale, broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, kohlrabi, collards.8. I grow in huge plantations in Hawaii, but I’m an immigrant from South America.9. I came from India, and I’m very sour.10.

  1. Native Americans ground me into a “meal” and used me for baking.11.
  2. If you’ve eaten me, you’ve also probably eaten the tiny wasp that died inside my fruit.12.
  3. I am a North American, and am one of the very few blue foods.13.
  4. I am incorrectly called a berry, and my seeds sit on the outside of a pulpy cusion.14.

I have a mutant relative, the nectarine, that isn’t fuzzy.15. My kind of fruit is called a “pome”, and that’s my real name in French.16. I might be used to scare people in the Autumn, but I also make a great tasting pie! 17. My family can “fix” nitrogen in my roots, so growing me actually improves your soil! 18.

People eat my flowers, and they love my heart, but I am thorny so be careful.19. When a blight destroyed my crop, thousands of Irish starved and left their homeland for the New World.20. Wheat, rice, corn, oats, barley, millet, and bamboo are all members of this family. Without us, most humans would go hungry.

What is our family called?

Where did the potato come from Ireland or South America?

The humble spud, we are told, is the best package of nutrition in the world, being rich in calories, minerals, vitamins and protein and virtually free of fat. It is a member, my informants also tell me, of the Solanaceae family, which includes tomatoes, aubergines and peppers.

  • There are about 150 species in the wild, but only one, Solanum tuberosum, is grown outside the Andes.
  • Within this species, however, more than 600 different varieties are known in Europe.
  • The potato first made its appearance in Europe about 1570, having been brought from South America by the Spaniards.

Traditional wisdom has it that Sir Walter Raleigh introduced the crop to Ireland about 1585. As a staple diet for the native population, it proved to be ideal. The only problem with potatoes is their susceptibility to disease, the worst of which, Phytophtora infestans, is known more commonly as blight.

Before 1842, potato blight was only known in Mexico, where it began in the Toluca Valley on the central plateau. That year, however, it turned up in New Hampshire and Vermont and, three years later it appeared in Belgium. By mid-August 1845, it had spread to northern France and southern England; it arrived in Ireland in September, with demographic consequences which have shaped our history ever since.

Potato blight is a fungus, and its appearance on the crop is often a legacy transmitted by infected tubers which have survived from the previous season. Once established, the spread of the disease is highly weather dependent. The rate of growth of the fungus depends on temperature; infection from plant to plant requires a film of moisture on the leaf – the longer this film persists, the greater the opportunity for infection.

It has been found that the ideal conditions for the spread of the disease are a relative humidity greater than about 90 per cent, and temperature in excess of about 10 C, both occurring simultaneously over an extended period. Nowadays, potato blight can be controlled – but it has not, as some city-dwellers might suspect, become extinct.

On the contrary, 1997 so far has been a year in which it thrived. Major infestations were reported from Donegal to Cork and the number of days when weather condition favoured its advance was more than double the climatic norm. The earliest observed occurrence was on May 17th in Co Wexford, and the worst period was during the first two weeks of August, when the severe flooding in the south was followed by a spell of the warm, thundery, humid weather that makes Phytophtora so vigorously infestans.

Who brought potatoes to America?

Get to Know the Potato – The Inca Indians in Peru were the first to cultivate potatoes around 8,000 BC to 5,000 B.C. In 1536, Spanish Conquistadors in Peru discovered the flavors of the potato and transported them to Europe. Sir Walter Raleigh introduced potatoes to Ireland in 1589, and it took nearly four decades for the potato to spread to the rest of Europe.

Potatoes arrived in the colonies in the 1620s when the Governor of the Bahamas sent a gift box containing potatoes to the governor of the colony of Virginia. While they spread throughout the northern colonies in limited quantities, potatoes did not become widely accepted until they received an aristocratic seal of approval from Thomas Jefferson, who served them to guests at the White House.

Thereafter, the potato steadily gained in popularity, this popularity being strengthened by a steady stream of Irish immigrants to the new nation. × Potatoes are grown as annual plants. Depending on the climate, potatoes are planted and harvested at different times of the year.

What originated in Peru?

One example of a food that originated in Peru you may know about is the potato. Brought to Europe in the 15th century, the potato is now the third most important agricultural crop in the world. And there are more than 4000 varieties of potatoes grown in Peru!

Are potatoes native to Asia?

The potato was indigenous to Peru till the 16th century and unknown elsewhere. The voyages of Christopher Columbus opened up different parts of the world and its produce creating what was known as the Columbian Exchange.

Where did the potato come from Ireland or South America?

The humble spud, we are told, is the best package of nutrition in the world, being rich in calories, minerals, vitamins and protein and virtually free of fat. It is a member, my informants also tell me, of the Solanaceae family, which includes tomatoes, aubergines and peppers.

  1. There are about 150 species in the wild, but only one, Solanum tuberosum, is grown outside the Andes.
  2. Within this species, however, more than 600 different varieties are known in Europe.
  3. The potato first made its appearance in Europe about 1570, having been brought from South America by the Spaniards.
See also:  How To Get Poisonous Potato Hypixel Skyblock?

Traditional wisdom has it that Sir Walter Raleigh introduced the crop to Ireland about 1585. As a staple diet for the native population, it proved to be ideal. The only problem with potatoes is their susceptibility to disease, the worst of which, Phytophtora infestans, is known more commonly as blight.

Before 1842, potato blight was only known in Mexico, where it began in the Toluca Valley on the central plateau. That year, however, it turned up in New Hampshire and Vermont and, three years later it appeared in Belgium. By mid-August 1845, it had spread to northern France and southern England; it arrived in Ireland in September, with demographic consequences which have shaped our history ever since.

Potato blight is a fungus, and its appearance on the crop is often a legacy transmitted by infected tubers which have survived from the previous season. Once established, the spread of the disease is highly weather dependent. The rate of growth of the fungus depends on temperature; infection from plant to plant requires a film of moisture on the leaf – the longer this film persists, the greater the opportunity for infection.

  • It has been found that the ideal conditions for the spread of the disease are a relative humidity greater than about 90 per cent, and temperature in excess of about 10 C, both occurring simultaneously over an extended period.
  • Nowadays, potato blight can be controlled – but it has not, as some city-dwellers might suspect, become extinct.

On the contrary, 1997 so far has been a year in which it thrived. Major infestations were reported from Donegal to Cork and the number of days when weather condition favoured its advance was more than double the climatic norm. The earliest observed occurrence was on May 17th in Co Wexford, and the worst period was during the first two weeks of August, when the severe flooding in the south was followed by a spell of the warm, thundery, humid weather that makes Phytophtora so vigorously infestans.

What vegetables are native to Europe?

The fruit and vegetable “Who am I” game 1. Sometimes people make a juice out of me, but don’t drink me too often or you’ll turn orange! 2. When Columbus landed in the new world, he thought he was in India so he called the natives “Indians.” He was told to bring back spices, so guess what he called me? 3.

In Germany, people who first grew me tried to eat my leaves, but they tasted terrible. They almost gave up on me till they tried my tubers! 4. When you cook me, I will weep and sigh.5. I used to be called a love apple, and people thought I was poisonous. Now I’m on your pizza.6. Russians ferment me to make Vodka.

Hint: I’m not a grape.7. I was taken out of the wild in Europe and turned into all of the following: kale, broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, kohlrabi, collards.8. I grow in huge plantations in Hawaii, but I’m an immigrant from South America.9. I came from India, and I’m very sour.10.

Native Americans ground me into a “meal” and used me for baking.11. If you’ve eaten me, you’ve also probably eaten the tiny wasp that died inside my fruit.12. I am a North American, and am one of the very few blue foods.13. I am incorrectly called a berry, and my seeds sit on the outside of a pulpy cusion.14.

I have a mutant relative, the nectarine, that isn’t fuzzy.15. My kind of fruit is called a “pome”, and that’s my real name in French.16. I might be used to scare people in the Autumn, but I also make a great tasting pie! 17. My family can “fix” nitrogen in my roots, so growing me actually improves your soil! 18.

People eat my flowers, and they love my heart, but I am thorny so be careful.19. When a blight destroyed my crop, thousands of Irish starved and left their homeland for the New World.20. Wheat, rice, corn, oats, barley, millet, and bamboo are all members of this family. Without us, most humans would go hungry.

What is our family called?

Who brought the potato to England?

Potatoes in Great Britain – What do fish and chips, crisps, and bangers and mash have in common? They’re all staples of traditional British cuisine that feature the humble potato. English explorer Sir Francis Drake discovered potatoes during his first, and the world’s second-ever, circumnavigation of the world in the late 16 th century in Latin America.

When did potatoes come to America?

18th Century A.D. – 1719 – Potatoes had been introduced to the United States several times throughout the 1600s. They were not widely grown for almost a century until 1719, when they were planted in Londonderry, New Hampshire, by Scotch-Irish immigrants, and from there spread across the nation.1771 – Antoine-Augustin Parmentier (1737-1813), a French military chemist and botanist, won a contest sponsored by the Academy of Besancon to find a food “capable of reducing the calamities of famine” with his study of the potato called Chemical Examination of the Potato,

  1. According to historical account, he was taken prisoner five times by the Prussians during the Seven Years’ War (1756-1763) and obliged to survive on a diet of potatoes.
  2. He also served dinners at which all courses were made of potatoes.
  3. Many French potato dishes now bear his name today.
  4. In 1785, Parmentier persuades Louis XVI (1754–1793), King of France, to encourage cultivation of potatoes.

The King let him plant 100 useless acres outside Paris, France in potatoes with troops keeping the field heavily guarded. This aroused public curiosity and the people decided that anything so carefully guarded must be valuable. One night Parmentier allowed the guards to go off duty, and the local farmers, as he had hoped, went into the field, confiscated the potatoes and planted them on their own farms.

  1. From this small start, the habit of growing and eating potatoes spread.
  2. It is said that Marie Antoinette (1755-1793), Queen of France and married to Louis XVI, often pinned potato flowers in her curls.
  3. Because of her, ladies of the era wore potato blossoms in their hair.1774 – Russian peasant refused to have anything to do with the potato until the mid 1700s.

Frederick the Great (1712-1786) sent free potatoes to the starving peasants after the famine of 1774, but they refused to touch them until soldiers were sent to persuade them.