What if corn is purely man-made? What if most of the fruits and veggies you love are all products of human intervention?
Well, the truth remains that many of the veggies in most people's gardens are actually man-made, including cauliflower and broccoli. But we're talking about maize (corn) here.
So, is corn man-made or it's still in its natural form? The simple answer is YES, corn is man-made. The history of corn is quite an interesting one you'd love to know.
However, before we continue, it may interest you to know that even bananas and carrots are man-made, but they are entirely safe to eat, regardless. Now, let's talk about corn.
How Did Corn Achieve Its Current Form?
Corn is loved by many for its versatility; it can be processed to form dishes and food. However, corn, in its current form wouldn't have come to be if not for human intervention.
The alteration of corn to make it appear and taste as it does, happened over 7000 years ago.
It would be a good idea to briefly explain the history of corn before continuing with the question. First things first, corn does not exist naturally in the wild. It can't grow on its own if not cared for by humans.
According to scientists and researchers, corn is endemic to America, Mexico to be precise. It belongs to the Zea genus, in the family Poaceae. While almost everyone knows this plant as "Corn," its actual name is "Maize."
Sources hint that the first corn looked like a seed head atop wheat stalks and the kernels were tiny, covered by a hull.
It was also said that corn was gotten from a wild grass called teosinte, which is entirely different from the modern-day corn we all know.
More so, teosinte didn't have the bright yellow kernels as this day corn. The plant, teosinte, over time, was bred to grow bigger to become what we all call "Maize" or "Corn."
The process that helped to achieve this is called selective breeding; this process takes hundreds or thousands of years before the actual result is obtained.
Is Corn Man-Made?
With all that has been said so far in this article, you can clearly tell that corn is man-made. It was gotten by breeding teosinte for quite a number of years.
Regardless, it is important to point out that some varieties of corn are GMO, which implies that they were genetically created in a lab.
GMO corns are created to achieve different results. Typically, GMOs (plant varieties created in labs) are aimed at achieving plants that can withstand natural circumstances that affect natural plants.
Thus, GMOs show more resistance to drought, pests, and herbicides.
Now, it is important to note that even though the main corn was hybridized from teosinte - and now genetically created; many of its varieties that are used in making the various "corn foods" we consume today in society (including the ones used for feeding animals) are genetically created.
Well, many reliable health bodies have affirmed that GMO corns are yet safe for human and animal consumption.
Roughly, there over 12,000 species of corn - both GMO species and selectively bred species. However, corn species are generally group into four (4) varieties.
Different Varieties Of Corn
The four accepted varieties of corn are field corn, sweet corn, popcorn, and ornamental corn.
What many people is "Field corn" because it has been around for many centuries, and found in all parts of the world.
1. Field Corn
Field corn is used in many ways; in some places, it is cooked in bread and cakes, while some others grind it to use as flour for making various processed foods. This corn is sometimes dried and stored, and it is also a popular livestock meal.
2. Sweet corn
The name alone tells it all, "sweet corn" is also very common and seen everywhere. It is characterized by its juiciness and sweetness.
Popcorn is a variety of maize with a hard shell - its shell is typically harder than that of other varieties. This variety is used in making the popcorns we chew as snacks.
Chances are that you have eaten popcorns many times - probably when you went to see a movie at the cinema.
4. Ornamental Corn
Due to cross-pollination, various enchanting varieties of corn have been created and they are generally categorized as ornamental corn because they are mostly used for decoration purposes.
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So, is corn man-made? Of course, the answer is yes. The modern-day corn was achieved through selective breeding that lasted for quite many years. It was further bred to create many varieties, which are being used for various purposes.
According to health sources, all varieties of corn are safe to consume, including the GMO varieties.
Corn can grow anywhere; it is cultivated across the world. Again, many veggies and fruits we eat today are man-made; regardless, they are yet safe to eat.