Before we get back to our sober coverage, from Ewen Callaway at Scientific American:
Geneticists have traced the history of beer’s most important ingredient: yeast. By sequencing the genomes of nearly 200 modern strains of brewer’s yeast, the research reveals how, over hundreds of years, humans transformed the wild fungus Saccharomyces cerevisiae into a variety of strains tuned for particular tipples.
An evolutionary tree of the yeast strains revealed distinct families of yeast used for making wine, bread and saké, and two distantly related groups of ale yeast, including strains from Belgium, Germany, Britain and the United States. More.
Genomics will be used to produce new strains.
Evolution goes really fast when there is design and purpose involved. And who can question the beer enthusiast’s dedication?
See also: What happens when chickens go wild?
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