21 Dec 2015

Bread, Wine, Chocolate - the Slow Loss of Foods We Love

From Nine To Noon, 11:29 am on 21 December 2015
Bread, Wine, Chocolate

Bread, wine and chocolate... are all things we're told to limit in our diets. But it is not their relative health benefits or risks that my next guest has explored, but their place in the history, culture and industrialisation of food. Simran Sethi is a journalist and writer whose book Bread, Wine, Chocolate, the Slow Loss of Foods We Love chronicles our culinary affairs with some key foods that have been developed into kitchen staples and how vulnerable they now are. How did these foods - and particularly the plant varieties they come from - squeeze out others as favourites? And what pressures are on the - sometimes delicate - ecosystems in which these plants thrive?

Simran Sethi tells Kathryn Ryan part of the problem is the lack of agricultural biodiversity – with 90% of our calories now coming from about 30 species and three quarters of our food coming from 12 plants and 5 animal species.