James L. Reid developed Yellow Dent Corn, the most popular variety of field corn grown world-wide during much of the 20th Century. Most of today’s hybrid corns were derived from Yellow Dent. Dent Corn originally was created by crossing flint and floury corns.
Corn is one of the most important production grains in the United States today. So the development of Yellow Dent Corn -- also known as "field corn" - had remarkable implications for U.S. farmers. Most of the corn grown in the United States today is Yellow Dent. It has a very high Vitamin A content and is perfect for a variety of uses. Yellow dent corn gets it's name because of a small 'dent' on both sides of each kernel. It is the corn of choice for many food manufacturers and is used in corn chips and taco shells. Cornmeal is also derived from Yellow Dent Corn, which is used in the baking of cornbread, and other products. Corn starch is turned into fructose which is used as a sweetener in many processed foods and soft drinks.
Yellow Dent Corn differs from the "sweet" corn served as a vegetable in several ways. Sweet corn is full of sugar and softens readily when heated. Sweet corn can even been eaten off the husk in a corn field. But Yellow Dent Corn has a very thick outer skin that does not soften when cooked but must be soaked or ground for processing.
Corn has been a native crop in the Americas for over 7,000 years, and is said to have been brought to Spain by Christopher Columbus.
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