Saturday, January 01, 2011

Growing and Harvesting in Food Production

Growing and Harvesting in Food Production
Present practices in food production have drastically altered nutritional values in our food supply. For example, animals are routinely fed, not with natural feedstuff, but with special types of feedstuffs known as “concentrates.”

Such feeding result in meat that contains smaller amounts of the desirable unsaturated fatty acids; in some instances, it adds antagonistic fatty acids that increase our dietary need for the essential polyunsaturated ones.

In eagerness to produce more kernels per row, more rows per ear and more ears per stalk, the plant breeder has scarified nutrient content. In desire to produce lovelier apples, sweeter oranges, blander vegetables, ship resistant foods, he has often produced varieties which are less nutritious.

An analysis of common food crops grown in Mexico and Central America showed that the Latin America varieties usually had higher contents of nutrients.

Another study showed that the average amount of ascorbic acid (vitamin C) per 100 grams (g) of orange juice was 61 milligrams (mg) from California Navels; 49 mg for California Valencias; and 37 mg from Florida Valencias. In several thousand samples of oranges, the ascorbic acid content ranged from 20 mg per g of juice to more than 80 mg, a fourfold difference.

Soil may be a factor in nutrient content In certain regions, the soil may be deficient in nutrients. Animals raised for food production on such soils, or crops grown on such soils, may reflect such deficiency.

Current practices in harvesting, shipping and storing crops can lessen their content of nutrients.

Some crops, picked prematurely and shipped unripe, never develop their full potential in nutrients or in flavor. It was found that postponing the date of harvest for early grown carrots could develop greater nutritive value.

Because falling temperature favors the formation of the protein and unsaturated fatty acids in soybeans, late harvesting of this crops can increase its nutritional content.

Tomatoes grown in greenhouses during the winter tome may have only half the amount of ascorbic acid of tomatoes that are vine ripened and grown outdoors in sunlight.
Growing and Harvesting in Food Production

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