Hybrid foods are the process of combining the advantages of two or more foods and then breeding new varieties.
Have you been one of those people who have mistaken grapefruits for oranges? It’s a common mistake, really; the resemblance is so uncanny that you can never often tell at first glance unless you were to peel it open. And there’s more to their similarity than you might think.
Grapefruits are a cross between Pomelo and Oranges, making it contain twice as much nutritional value as it is derived from a combination of both fruits. But before you wonder if this is some GMO food, then no – the Grapefruit is what we call a hybrid fruit or precisely one of the kinds of Hybrid Foods we will be discussing today.
Well, we will talk about the following topics:
What are Hybrid Foods?
Suppose we were to explain what Hybrid Foods are in general. In that case, we have to discuss the ongoing misconception that Hybrid Foods are no different from GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) Food.
The Difference Between Hybrid Foods to GMO Foods
Hybrid food and genetically modified food are obviously different; what are the specific differences between them?
GMOs are Food bioengineered by a man in a laboratory. Their genetic material has been modified in a way that doesn’t occur in a natural setting. Scientists started doing this process mainly to increase the level of crop protection. This way, it will keep producing fruits and vegetables resistant to harmful insects that may cause plant diseases by increasing their herbicides’ resilience.
This would also grant higher yield in crops, making them affordable and readily available in the market.
As impressive as it may be, there is still a gray area for thGMOs’afeness; it is quite difficult to make general statements regarding the safety of GMO Foods. It’s actually on a case-by-case basis of whether these products have passed the National Risk Assessment. However, for sure, this makes consumers lose their confidence in buying something with “potential risks.”
Now that we’ve had a clearer understanding of GMOs, it is time to discuss Hybrid Foods in general; is there a difference?
Hybrid Food involves crossing 2 varieties of fruits or vegetables to make new and improved Produce that maximizes their desirable traits through human intervention. That means these types of Produce aren’t bioengineered in a laboratory somewhere. Still, other scientists have found a way to naturally enable this process by selecting two fruits or two different vegetables to combine them into healthier and improved Produce.
A statement from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics further explains this by saying that Hybrid foods are produced through traditional controlled pollination techniques that can occur in nature; this inevitably breeds a new variety of fruits and vegetables with desirable characteristics.
Improved sizes, texture, production yield, taste, and all-in-all nutritional value are some of the main factors for Hybrid Food.
Types of Hybrid Foods
Black Galaxy Tomato – Now this is something you don’t see nor hear every day. This is a hybrid of wild and cultured tomatoes, making them have a dark pigment likened to blueberries. The scientists behind this marvel say that this variety of tomato contains more vitamin C than a regular tomato.
It also contains “Anthocyanins,” a compound known to protect you from cardiovascular diseases and cancer. With its nutritional value and striking appearance, how could any person resist?
Pluots – Pluots are a cross between plum and apricots. Also called “Apriums” or “Plumcots,”; this hybrid fruit has a sweeter taste compared to the sour plums. It still holds the same nutritional value as regular plums, but this takes the cake to make it palatable and more delightful.
Tayberry – It is derived from red raspberry and blackberry. This tart-tasting fruit has an array of nutritional value containing anti-oxidizing properties: rich in Vitamin C and Bioflavonoids.
Blood Lime – Blood oranges were the only “bloody citrus fruit” until the Blood Lime fruit came along. This hybrid offers a far sweeter taste than a regular lime while also containing the same nutritional benefits.
Pineberry – Easily distinguishable from regular strawberries from its much paler or “white” color; this is a combination of a pineapple and a strawberry. They are quite fragrant to the smell and have a mild pineapple flavor. It is prevalent because it’s rich in antioxidants as well.
Kalettes – Derived from Brussels Sprouts and Kale, tastes like soft kale with a hint of sprouts. Its nutritional value contains an abundant amount of Vitamin K and Vitamin C.
Broccolini – A true staple in Japanese Cuisine, they are derived from Broccoli and Chinese Kale. It has a less bitter taste than Broccoli, with a tinge of sweetness with a pleasantly chewy texture. Some varieties of Broccolini have been reported to contain more Vitamin C compared to natural Broccoli.
Romanesco – Romanesco is one of the earliest hybrid foods; dating back from the 16th century, this mixed vegetable is derived from cauliflower and Broccoli. They taste a bit nutty and sweet, enough like cauliflower but crunchier in texture. While the average cauliflower can give you 80 percent of your vitamin C, Romanesco surpasses this by providing 120 percent of vitamin C for your daily allowance.
Angello – Also known as “Seedless Pepper,” which is very convenient. Because people usually remove the seeds from regular bell pepper. They are much sweeter and have a crunchier texture. Their Vitamin C level is similar to that of gular bell pepper. However, they are incredibly high, so their nutritional value is still intact.
Rainbow Carrots – If someone told me back in the day that such a thing existed, my childhood relationship with vegetables would’ve been a lot easier and more colorful. Plant-breeders have developed this multi-colored variety of carrots with high levels of pigment. The different colors also contain various sorts of nutrients, such as benefits like aiding digestion to prevent heart disease & prostate cancer.
Advantages of Hybrid Fruits
1. Hybrid food production is Safe
The process of hybridization is artificial but natural. No chemicals were involved in the process of hybrid farming. Besides, the practice is safer for farmers who have specialized in hybrid farming. Crop yields have multiplied, which is also a benefit for the population.
2. Hybrid Foods are Rich in Nutrients
The primary motivation for hybrid fruits and vegetables is to improve the quality and quantity of vital elements. This improvisation makes Food healthier and delicious. A variety of fruits and vegetables are more colorful and full of minerals necessary for growth.
3. Easy to Grow
Farmers don’t have to work throughout the year to cultivate hybrid Food. Hybrid or crossbred crops are seasonal and easy to grow. At the same time, the rest of the process remains the same as conventional production methods.
Top 5 Health Benefits of Hybrid Foods:
1. Made in a Natural Process – Even if it is encouraged by human intervention, it is created in a naturally occurring process such as cross-pollination, which makes the actual production of Produce safe and void from any chemical imbalances.
2. Safer for Consumption – Hybrid Foods contain many beneficial enzymes safer than synthesized nutrients created in a lab.
3. Maximizes benefits from Regular Fruits – A product with the best of both worlds from 2 varieties of fruit or vegetables makes it stand out by giving maximum benefits to your body.
4. Richer in Vitamins – Hybrid fruits often come with higher vitamin C levels, which gives a sure boost for your immune system.
5. Nutritional Value is High – Every compound makes up the fruit as a whole packed with essential nutrients; some surpass the nutritional value of what your body regularly needs, from anti-oxidizing properties to impacting the overall health in the most beneficial way possible.
Hybrid Foods brings an entirely new variety of fruits or vegetables we didn’t know we need. We won’t discredit GMOs because they come across as a wholly different way of production. The natural process in which Hybrid Foods undergo does improve buyer confidence in these products, and aside from their higher price point compared to their regular counterparts, the health benefits you will get give it enough value.