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  • Print publication year: 2000
  • Online publication date: March 2008

V.D.2 - South America

from V.D - The History and Culture of Food and Drink in the Americas
The continent of South America has been a place of origin of many important food plants. The pre-Columbian peoples of South America domesticated 50 edible plants, of which were such efficient sources of food that they subsequently have served as nutritional anchors for rest of the world. Among Europeans in South America, the most desired of Old World foods was wheat. Another basic staple among the Iberians was olive oil, which was shipped to South America for more than a century in the early colonial period. The diets of the peoples of highland South America from Andean Venezuela through Bolivia are heavy in carbohydrates. Contrasting nutritional standards and perturbations in supply add to the complexity of the total food situation in South America. Bottled beer, produced in commercial breweries started mostly by Germans, has become the preferred alcoholic beverage in South America. Of all the South American nations, Argentina and Uruguay have depended most heavily on food export.
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The Cambridge World History of Food
  • Online ISBN: 9781139058643
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