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Fruits: A Dichotomy of Taste - Essay Example

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Fruits: A Dichotomy of Taste
The amount of flora in the world has been increasing exponentially since life first took hold on the planet. There are many different types of plants that each has their own unique characteristics. …
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Running Head: Fruit Research Fruits: A Dichotomy of Taste School Fruits: A Dichotomy of Taste The amount of flora in the world has been increasing exponentially since life first took hold on the planet. There are many different types of plants that each has their own unique characteristics. Even though there has been extensive taxonomic classification of the world’s flora, there are still many isolated regions of the world where there are plants that have yet to be discovered. In addition, due to the multitude of different ways in which plants reproduce, natural selection and genetic engineering have both led to the creation of hybrids, resulting in an increase in flora genetic variability. There are many different biochemical processes that occur in the plants that give them characteristics ranging from taste to different plant morphology. These biochemical processes are determined by genetic coding that creates differences in chemicals that results in either the sweet or sour taste. There are a combination of different types of sugars, starches, proteins, etc. that creates the intrinsic properties of taste. There are organic properties of specific chemicals that affect this. In fruits that are sweeter, there are higher concentrations of sugars such as fructose and glucose that exist in the biochemical system. Fruits that are sourer have higher concentrations of acids in the system such as acetic acid. Those fruits that have no taste generally have equal concentrations of both acids and sugars. The process of ripening is what ultimately plays a role with this characteristic (Gleason, & Chollet, 2012). Seeds are the way by which fruits undergo reproduction. As a fruit becomes more mature, the ovum that holds the seeds begins to change biochemically. In terms of produce, as a fruit ripens, this means that it is becoming more tasteful and palatable. In the natural world, as the fruit becomes more ripe, this means that the seeds are ready for dispersal. Therefore, the riper the fruit is, the more ready the seeds are ready in terms of their morphological growth, thus they are more likely to take root and grow (Mauseth, 2009). Human interaction with both flora and fauna on the earth occurs daily. Early on in history, humans began to cause change to ecosystems. Certain crops that were deemed valuable were cultivated at higher rates. In the early dynamics of international trade, different plant species were spread to other parts of the world, such as in the case of the triangle trade that existed during the thirteen colonies. Now in an era of growing biotechnological advancements, humans are attempting to gain greater control over the properties of food in order to increase crop yield and resistance to the elements as well as pests. In some cases, there are reasons that humans have to cultivate crops before they are ready in order to meet the demands of an expanding population. Therefore, seeds may not reach their mature point in order to be planted which disrupts the plant’s life cycle. In addition, genetic engineering is being used in order to change the incubation time required to create different fruits by stimulating growth so that mass crops can be produced, however this has effects such as having individual plants that are smaller compared to their natural counterparts (Ulukan, 2009). Through the biochemical process of photosynthesis, plants are able to synthesize organic molecules such as carbon dioxide, glucose, and water. These are then combined through other biochemical processes resulting in different kinds of sugars such as fructose and sucrose. The seeds require nourishments in order to grow and develop. This requires the seeds to take the different sugars, such as fructose and glucose, and combines them with water in order to hydrolyze them. As a result, these biochemical processes lead to the result of healthy seeds. Understanding the important properties that lead to the development of the plant species is not only important to biologists, but also to consumer scientists as well. Learning how to maximize and control these biochemical processes has potential positive impacts on a growing food shortage and growing population. Thus, understanding the complex interactions can lead to greater understanding and control over ecosystems. References Gleason, F, & Chollet, R. (2012). Plant biochemistry. Sudbury, MA: Jones & Bartlett Publishers. Mauseth, J. (2009). Botany: an introduction to plant biology. Sudbury, MA: Jones & Bartlett Publishers. Ulukan, H. (2009). The evolution of cultivated plant species: classical plant breeding versus genetic engineering. Plant Systematics & Evolution, 280(3/4), 133-142. doi:10.1007/s00606-008-0118-8 Read More
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