A staple in salads, Arugula is a nutritionally valuable, Mediterranean native packed with vitamins. It can be served raw or cooked depending on the dish and its use. In the US, most is grown in California and Arizona. Like other leafy greens, arugula germination, growth, and survivability are decreased at high temperatures, although variation exists between varieties. High temperatures do however have positive effects on plant nutrients and flavor, but again this varies by variety.  Breeding for more climate change resilient varieties is a priority.
 “Arugula | Herb,” Encyclopedia Britannica, accessed June 21, 2021, https://www.britannica.com/plant/arugula.
 Jake Jasper, Carol Wagstaff, and Luke Bell, “Growth Temperature Influences Postharvest Glucosinolate Concentrations and Hydrolysis Product Formation in First and Second Cuts of Rocket Salad,” Postharvest Biology and Technology 163 (May 2020): 111157, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.postharvbio.2020.111157.
Yields of major staple crops like wheat and rice are being hurt by increasing temperatures. Wine grape production is moving to cooler climes causing changes in the character of some of our favorites. The flavors and health benefits of teas, the size of potatoes, the sting of a hot pepper, where fish call home in the oceans, and a future decline in protein in vegetables—it’s all changing.
Our food database shows the ingredients affected by a changing climate.
To learn what farmers, scientists, and many others are doing to keep the menu stocked, see Stewardship of the Land and Our Changing Menu: Climate Change and the Foods We Love and Need. You have a role, too!
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This food ingredient database is in its early phase and we will strive to expand it on an ongoing basis so that everyone is aware of how climate change is affecting the foods we love and need.