The next time you’re about to buy bananas or carrots, think of the following: they neither tasted nor looked this way before people domesticated them. When we say domesticated, we think of the selective breeding where farmers have been selecting and growing these fruits and vegetables, for millennia, in order to get the foods we eat today.

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Genetic breeding is a slow process of production, which in fact is very similar to GMO. While genetically modified foods make the plants more resilient to pests, selective breeding changes their taste and visual characteristics. Therefore, we can conclude that selective breeding is in fact a natural way of producing GMO foods.

From carrots, to eggplants, to bananas. Here we show you some of the most used fruits and vegetables that people have modified over time.

GMO Fruits And Vegetables, Modified Through Selective Breeding
Wild Carrot Vs Domesticated Carrot

GMO carrot Carrots have been cultivated since the 10th century, in Asia Minor and Persia. Their primitive versions had a thin, fork-like shape, white in color, and with a strong taste. With time, the selective breeding had made them orange in color and very, very tasty.

Wild Eggplant Vs Domesticated Eggplant

GMO eggplant The breeding history of eggplants is full of colors and shapes, such as purple, azure, white and yellow. The earliest cultivation of eggplants is registered in China, when their initial versions had spines on the place where the flowers of the plant connect with the stem. Modern domesticated eggplants do not have the spines anymore, but are larger and more oblong in shape, with a recognizable dark purple color.

Wild Banana Vs Domesticated Banana

GMO banana Cultivation of bananas goes way back, about 7,000 years ago. Modern cultivated bananas come from two wild species, by combining Musa balbisiana with Musa acuminata. The original wild form of bananas is: small shape with large, solid seeds. The delicious banana we eat today has seeds that are smaller in shape, it has a better taste, it is peelable and full of nutrients. These differences are evident in the picture below.

Wild Watermelon Vs Domesticated Watermelon

GMO watermelon Wild watermelon had a completely different interior than the one produced nowadays. Namely, wild watermelon had flesh divided into six triangular pieces, in the form of a pie, while modern watermelon has a more consisted pink flesh. You can see the difference in the picture.

Wild Corn Vs Domesticated Corn

GMO corn Records show that sweet corn has been first cultivated way back, since the 7th millennium BC, when it was still small in size and barely edible. Nowadays, sweet corn is much larger than its primitive version, about 1,000 times larger, and it is much easier to grow and peel. It has contents that are high in sugar, about 6.6 percent, while natural corn had only 1.9 percent of sugar.

Wild Peach Vs Domesticated Peach

GMO peach Primitive peaches had a cherry-like shape, and were small in shape, with very little flesh. They had an earthly and a little bit of salty taste, similar to today’s lentils. Modern peaches have 27 percent more juice, 4 percent more sugar and are 64 times larger.

So, the next time you’re thinking of GMO food, know that this does not necessarily mean that it is unhealthy. Selective breeding is a form of GMO, which gives us the desired taste and shape in foods.