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Sunday, September 12, 2010

Good bye to Tasting and Smelling

When I was a kid, tomatoes had a lot of flavor. Now a tomato tastes more like air. There is no flavor, but boy they are pretty! The taste has been left out in favor of growing a sturdy, durable, and pretty tomato.

Did you know this is also true in the case of flowers? Now days flowers are bred based on making sure they are durable and pretty so the scent of flowers is now almost gone. Most flowers now no longer have that wonderful smell we used to know. I did not even realize this until I read the book “Flower Confidential” by Amy Stewart.

The book "Flower Confidential" is an in-depth look at the flower industry, a $40 billion year business that is like other industries; motivated by fame, money, profit share, and what sells. What sells is a durable and perfect looking flower.

It is almost as if we have displaced our ability to taste and smell in our process of inadvertently ranking and placing more value in what we see and touch over taste and smell. It makes me wonder if our future generations will even still have five senses (taste, smell, touch, see, and the ability to hear) included in their natural gifts of tricks. Perhaps the humans of the future won't even need all five senses. You know, the concept of "use it or lose it" may be one of those concepts that applies to our five senses. The ability to taste and smell may just end up disappearing and fading into air, just like what happened with the flavor of tomatoes.

If you are interested in learning more about the flower industry, I recommend the book “Flower Confidential” by Amy Stewart. She provides the behind scenes of this powerful industry, including the geneticists, the farmers, hybridizers, and florists, all focused on inventing, manufacturing, and selling flowers that are bigger, brighter and sturdier than anything nature could do on her own.

An eye-opening read and new perspective on flowers and the industry that has changed mother nature.