NOV 01, 2017 3:25 PM PDT

Plant Domestication: The Original GMO?

WRITTEN BY: Xuan Pham

When was the last time you saw blue round eggplants in the grocery store or at the farmer's market? Before plant domestication, wild eggplants came in a variety of shapes and colors - think white, blue, and even yellow. With selective breeding, most eggplants we now know are oval, elongated, with a distinctive purple shade.

Similar to the aubergine, other fruits and vegetables have become nearly unrecognizable since their domestication. Wild carrots, for example, looked more like gnarly gangly roots, with not even a hint of a yellow orange color. And wild bananas looked much more fibrous, seedy, and unappetizing compared to the modern day banana.

Watch the video to see if you would recognize any wild version of your local supermarket favorites!
About the Author
  • I am a human geneticist, passionate about telling stories to make science more engaging and approachable. Find more of my writing at the Hopkins BioMedical Odyssey blog and at TheGeneTwist.com.
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