Potatoes were thought to be first cultivated in South America, but pieces of evidence were insufficient. The recent genetic findings hold little water if there were no direct plant evidence to support it. However, a new evidence could confirm the saga of the dear potatoes that the world loves.
Before potatoes became a pair for your Sunday roast, a butter to your meat and the jelly to your fish - it had a long history of how it ended up to become one of the world's food staple.
Archaeologists at the University of California, Merced published a study the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
just this week. The study reports the direct evidence of potatoes' link to the ancient civilization of Andes, Peru. Micro-remains of cultivated potatoes were found in grinding tools dating as far back as 3400 B.C.
The tools were found in Jiskairumoko, in the Titicaca Basin of southern Peru. Archaeologists were able to get the tiny remains of grains off from the tools through sonicator. Grains were dislodged from the pores of the tools by using sonic waves.
141 starch samples were recovered from 14 tools. 50 starch samples were consistent with domesticated or cultivated potatoes.
Claudia Rumold, a co-author of the study pointed out that they do not have enough data to establish how many times the potatoes were cultivated in the area.
However, there is enough evidence to say that before the rest of the world enjoyed their different cultivars of potatoes, the Andean civilization had it first.