Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Soybeans Domesticated 3500 BCE

Examination of charred soybean remains in Northern China, Japan and South Korea has pushed their date of domestication back from 0 CE (with a connection to the Zhou dynasty), the best estimate of the date of domestication until now, to the much earlier 3500 BCE at a location in Central China, early on in the East Asian Neolithic. Earlier studies of the East Asian Neolithic had found millet that old in these regions, but not soybeans, which are less easily preserved.

Soybeans (Glycine max) have been found in the wild in a predomesticated small bean version in the region from 7000 BCE.

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