Climate Scientists Discover Food Grows in the Tropics

Essay by Eric Worrall

Smithsonian correspondent Sarah Kuta has discovered it might be possible to eat tropical staples like Bread Fruit in place of wheat, if the planet warms.

Is Breadfruit the Climate Change-Proof Food of the Future?

New research suggests it will fare better than our current staple crops under warming conditions

Sarah Kuta
Daily Correspondent August 30, 2022 11:11 a.m.

Whether fried, fermented, roasted or eaten raw, breadfruit is a versatile food that’s played an important role in Oceanic cuisine for thousands of years. Now, as the climate continues to shift because of human actions, the fruit could increasingly play a role in addressing global hunger, according to a paper published this month in the journal PLOS Climate.

Past research has found that yields of staple crops like cornsoybeanswheat and ricemay decline in the future because of climate change, especially in regions close to the equator. But the dimpled, lime-green crop of the breadfruit tree seems to be more resilient to rising temperatures and increased rainfall variability, the new research suggests.

“Breadfruit is a neglected and underutilized species that happens to be relatively resilient in our climate change projections,” says Daniel Horton, an Earth and planetary scientist at Northwestern University and one of the study’s authors, in a statement. “This is good news because several other staples that we rely on are not so resilient… As we implement strategies to adapt to climate change, breadfruit should be considered in food security adaptation.”

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Here’s another thought – now Earth and Planetary scientists have discovered people in the tropics can grow food, do you think it possible that the genetic engineers of the future might be able to transfer heat resilience to cold climate fruit, or cold resilience to warm climate fruit?

That way we could continue to enjoy all the foods we love, plus a whole lot more, regardless of what happens to the global climate.

via Watts Up With That?

August 31, 2022 at 04:28AM

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