The potato has played a more significant part in history than most people realize. With maize, wheat, sugar cane, and rice as the world’s most important agricultural crops, it is the world’s most important non-grain food product, exceeding rice. The potato is seldom mentioned outside of the occasional joke, anecdote, and nursery rhyme despite its importance.
Potatoes were first cultivated by the Incan Indians of Peru between 8000 and 5000 BC in the High Andes Mountains. Several experts believe potatoes have been around since 10,000 BC. Due to a lack of record-keeping, we will never know the exact year potatoes were first grown.
It is enough to say that potatoes have a long history. The Incas were also among the first to utilize dehydrators, and they preserved potatoes by drying and mashing them into chuñu. In a natural disaster, Chuñu may be maintained for a decade, protecting the local people.
Potato history was about to be made with the advent of the Spanish Conquistadors in 1532. Mining for gold hired Incan men as miners, and the Spaniards saw that the workers had chuñu, a Peruvian food made from regular potatoes which are dried in the heights of the Andes. Eventually, as time went on, they included chuñu in their ship’s provisions and brought them back to Spain when they returned.
While some Spanish farmers grew potatoes for animal feed, others converted them into animal feed. The humble potato started in Spain in the 1500s and steadily expanded to Europe in the late 1500s; however, the seeds of hatred against potatoes were widely distributed throughout the population in Europe due to it being an immoral and heathen culture from which it originated.
To sum this article up, the Incans discovered potatoes, and the Spanish were the one who was the key in the subsequent rise of potatoes in Europe, then across the globe.