While land plants have existed on earth for nearly 500 million years, maize in the form that we are accustomed to today has only existed for approximately 6000 years. Scientists believe that maize is derived from an earlier ancestral plant called teosinte. Maize was domesticated in MesoAmerica, in the region that is now Mexico. Because it was nutritious, easy to store and carry, adapted to diverse growing conditions and provided food and fuel, maize became a staple food for most American and Caribbean cultures. After Europeans arrived in America they took it home with them and it spread around the world. Domesticated over the centuries, maize nourished the civilizations that became the mighty empires of the early Americas, including the Mayans, Incas, Aztecs and Anasazi. Treasured and worshipped, maize was the center of their world. Source: The teacher friendly guide
Popcorn has become one of America's most beloved snack foods, but it has been enjoyed across the globe for thousands of years.
Perhaps the world's oldest snack food, popcorn is easy to cook and can be seasoned in hundreds of ways.
Corn is one of the world’s most important crops.
We don’t just pop it and munch it on the cob; corn can be turned into flour and syrup, it is fed to livestock, it is transformed into ethanol and it can even be used to make plastic.
Between 2016 and 2017, about a billion tons of corn were produced around the globe, and corn yields more than six percent of all food calories for humans.