The Globalization of Food & Plants

Take a look at your evening meal and what do you see? Common foods that are so much a part of daily sustenance that you would hardly suspect they originated in another country. But it is true.

Most of the foods that we commonly eat today are the product of globalization, often trading and connections that began centuries before the term came into use. Next time you eat one of the foods highlighted in the following articles imagine what life would be like if that food had never left its home country.

Below, you can find various foods that have made a significant impact in our life today.


The quest for spices contributed to colonialism and global empires

The Potato

From wild tuber to the French fry, the potato has withstood traveled the world


First thing in the morning or after dinner, what would we do without coffee?

The Tomato

From pizza and spaghetti and meatballs to salsa and rogan josh, the tomato has adapted to every cuisine and continues to please


That cup of steaming tea has traveled a long way - the history of tea reveals globalization’s best and worst sides


The chili pepper has been with many cultures for a long time


First cultivated in the Americas, tobacco spread around the world with its true nature in disguise


Originally from China, soybeans are a source of protein that’s versatile in both kitchens and industry


A commodity with no nutritional value won over global palates, but obesity has followed