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Wheat. Bridge McKye. Origins. Fertile Crescent Iraq, Syria, Israel, Jordan and Egypt Originally gathered as a wild grass Stone Age: Rocks used to grind wheat berries into flour 5,000 year old loaves of bread from Egypt. Agriculture. Cultivation of wheat began in 7,800 BC

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wheat

Wheat

Bridge McKye

origins
Origins
  • Fertile Crescent
    • Iraq, Syria, Israel, Jordan and Egypt
  • Originally gathered as a wild grass
  • Stone Age: Rocks used to grind wheat berries into flour
  • 5,000 year old loaves of bread from Egypt
agriculture
Agriculture
  • Cultivation of wheat began in 7,800 BC
  • People began to domesticate wild wheat and cross different varieties
  • Wheat begins to spread
    • Southeastern Europe by 6,000 BC
    • Europe, Central Asia, India, and Africa by 3,000 BC
    • Americas in 1492 with Columbus
history and technology
History and Technology
  • First millstones in 5,500 BC
  • Bread ovens by 3,300 BC
  • Yeast in bread
  • Animal power for milling used by the Romans in 200 BC
  • Sieves to filter flour- for pure bread
  • Water mills appeared 2,000 years ago
lifestyle changes
Lifestyle Changes
  • Domesticated wheat led to a sedentary lifestyle
  • Cities
  • Art, religion, science, education, literature
  • Societies began to evolve around wheat
  • Higher populations need higher wheat yields, leads to pushes for technology
industrial revolution
Industrial Revolution
  • Crop rotations become more common
    • Wheat, beans, root crops, fallow
  • Technology and warm weather produce more reliable yields
  • First machine applied to wheat production
    • Automated seed drill
19 th century
19th Century
  • Transition from round loaves to rectangular loaves
  • Separating components of flour
    • Whole wheat flour-more nutritious
    • White flour-doesn’t spoil as easily
industrialization
Industrialization
  • After WWII
  • Agro-chemicals
  • Crop Breeding
  • Mechanization
    • Tractors for planting, fertilizing, applying pesticides
    • Threshers
    • Transported by train
    • Stored in grain elevators
  • Increase in global trade
green revolution
Green Revolution
  • Promoted high yielding, industrialized wheat in developing nations
  • U.S. appeared to be acting on humanitarian concerns, but was really acting out of self-interest
  • Focus on breeding certain qualities into wheat
    • High yields
    • High quality
    • Drought and disease resistance
    • Weather resistant
green revolution1
Green Revolution
  • Wheat production was boosted in India, China, and Mexico as well as more developed countries such as Britain and even the U.S.
  • Along with increased wheat yields came many environmental problems
  • Increased wheat production led to

wheat being dumped on foreign markets

wheat production today
Wheat Production Today
  • 3rd in world production
    • 2000: 21 billion bushels on 520 million acres
  • Provides 16% of calories in developing areas
  • 36% from Asia, 17% from Europe, 16% from North America
  • China is first in world wheat production followed by India and the U.S.
  • Subsidized in many countries
wheat production today1
Wheat Production Today
  • Wheat production is perennial and it is being harvested somewhere every month
  • Can be grown in harsh, wind swept environment that are too cold for rice or corn
  • 90% of wheat in industrialized nations is rain fed
  • About half is irrigated in developing nations
    • High amount of fertilizer used in these areas
  • 90% of wheat grown worldwide is bread wheat
crop disease
Crop Disease
  • Scab
    • Attacks the head of the grain
    • Produces shriveled, bleached grains
    • Can cause health problems in humans and animals
  • Rust
    • Responsible for the biggest wheat pandemic in the U.S.
    • Produces red pustules on the plant
environmental concerns
Environmental Concerns
  • Water pollution and overuse
    • Chemical runoff and irrigation
  • Soil degradation
    • Erosion
    • Fertility Loss
  • Deforestation
  • Habitat Loss
  • Loss of biodiversity
  • Fossil fuel dependence
health concerns
Health Concerns
  • Celiac Disease
    • Autoimmune disorder that attacks the villi of the small intestine
    • Nutrients not absorbed
    • Triggered by gluten, a protein in wheat, rye, and barley
    • 300 Symptoms
      • Anemia, depression, diarrhea, abdominal pain, fatigue
    • Can appear at any age
    • No cure, must eat a gluten free diet
wheat and diet
Wheat and Diet
  • Whole wheat perceived as healthy in the U.S.
  • Atkins diet suggests eating as few carbohydrates and wheat products as possible
  • Wheat is an ingredient in hundreds of foods
    • Bread, crackers, cakes and cookies, pasta, tortillas, breakfast cereals
  • Wheat has more protein than corn or rice
wheat and culture
Wheat and Culture
  • Important to the ancient Greeks, Romans, Egyptians, and Chinese
    • Often associated with life forces and fertility
  • Today Germany has the greatest variety of breads in the world
  • Different countries are known for different breads
wheat and culture1
Wheat and Culture
  • Wheat and Christianity
    • Key part of The Eucharist
    • “Give us this day our daily bread”
  • Many references to bread in daily language
    • Bread basket
    • Bread winner
    • Bread=money
    • Companion: Latin for “with bread”
gender roles
Gender Roles
  • Men
    • Apply chemicals, manure, fertilizer
    • Spade work
    • Sow the seeds
    • Uproot the seedlings
    • Market the grain
gender roles1
Gender Roles
  • Women
    • Transplanting
    • Storage
    • Weeding
    • Threshing
    • Grinding the grain and cooking
genetic modification
Genetic Modification
  • Many markets are opposed to G.M wheat
  • Cross contamination
  • Monocrops
  • Transnational corporations
  • Health concerns
  • Expensive, little benefit for farmers
  • Increased pest resistence
sustainable wheat
Sustainable Wheat?
  • Protecting the soil, water, biodiversity, community
  • Need more community based, supported production
  • Organic is a step in the right direction
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