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As of 2014, China led the world in potato production, and, together with India, produced 37% of the world's potatoes.The English word potato comes from Spanish patata (the name used in Spain).They belong to eight or nine species, depending on the taxonomic school.Apart from the 5,000 cultivated varieties, there are about 200 wild species and subspecies, many of which can be cross-bred with cultivated varieties. There is one pentaploid cultivated species (with 60 chromosomes): S. There are two major subspecies of Solanum tuberosum: andigena, or Andean; and tuberosum, or Chilean.Cross-breeding has been done repeatedly to transfer resistances to certain pests and diseases from the gene pool of wild species to the gene pool of cultivated potato species. There are two triploid species (with 36 chromosomes): S. The Andean potato is adapted to the short-day conditions prevalent in the mountainous equatorial and tropical regions where it originated; the Chilean potato, however, native to the Chiloé Archipelago, is adapted to the long-day conditions prevalent in the higher latitude region of southern Chile.Genetically modified varieties have met public resistance in the United States and in the European Union. Nonetheless, genetic testing of the wide variety of cultivars and wild species affirms that all potato subspecies derive from a single origin in the area of present-day southern Peru and extreme Northwestern Bolivia (from a species in the Solanum brevicaule complex).New varieties grown from seed can be propagated vegetatively by planting tubers, pieces of tubers cut to include at least one or two eyes, or cuttings, a practice used in greenhouses for the production of healthy seed tubers.Plants propagated from tubers are clones of the parent, whereas those propagated from seed produce a range of different varieties. Three thousand of them are found in the Andes alone, mainly in Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador, Chile, and Colombia.

After flowering, potato plants produce small green fruits that resemble green cherry tomatoes, each containing about 300 seeds.Some Englishmen who did not fancy potatoes formed a Society for the Prevention of Unwholesome Diet.The initials of the main words in this title gave rise to spud." Like most other pre-20th century acronymic origins, this is false, and there is no evidence that a Society for the Prevention of Unwholesome Diet ever existed.Potato plants are herbaceous perennials that grow about 60 cm (24 in) high, depending on variety, with the leaves dying back after flowering, fruiting and tuber formation.They bear white, pink, red, blue, or purple flowers with yellow stamens.The 16th-century English herbalist John Gerard referred to sweet potatoes as "common potatoes", and used the terms "bastard potatoes" and "Virginia potatoes" for the species we now call "potato".The name spud for a small potato comes from the digging of soil (or a hole) prior to the planting of potatoes.1921 ---Table service (French, Russian, English, American) ---Table Manners Became Polite, Christian Science Monitor World surveys ---International cuisines, history and popular foods ---History of Vegetarianism, International Vegetarian Union Food Timeline library owns 2300 books, hundreds of 20th century USA food company brochures, & dozens of vintage magazines (Good Housekeeping, American Cookery, Ladies Home Journal &c.) We also have ready access to historic magazine, newspaper & academic databases. Potatoes have become a staple food in many parts of the world and an integral part of much of the world's food supply.Potatoes are the world's fourth-largest food crop, following maize (corn), wheat, and rice. If green sections (sprouts and skins) of the plant are exposed to light the tuber can produce a high enough concentration of glycoalkaloids to affect human health.In the Andes, where the species is indigenous, some other closely related species are cultivated.

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