NASA to Plant Potatoes on Mars?

NASA to Plant Potatoes in Mars

Looks like Sarah… Ang Munting Prinsesa‘s Becky will have to get used to peeling potatoes because the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is partnering with Peru’s International Potato Center (CIP) to plant potatoes on Mars.

You read that right. It turns out that the soil from Peru’s Pampas de la Hoya Desert is similar to that of the red planet. A team composed of scientists from both NASA and CIP will simulate Mars’s atmospheric and climactic conditions in a laboratory using soil from Pampas de la Hoya.

Today, there are over 842 million people affected by famine around the world. Planting potatoes in Mars ensures food security and save millions of lives in devastated areas across the globe. To do this, NASA and CIP aim to build a controlled dome on Mars to farm the resilient crop.

The project was developed by Will Rust, Creative Director of Memac Ogilvy Dubai, who believed that potatoes could be the answer to global hunger. Potatoes are known for their vitamin C, iron, and zinc.

The increased levels of carbon dioxide (Mars is 95% carbon dioxide) are beneficial to the crop, which may yield two to four times that of a harvest under conditions on Earth.

“The extraordinary efforts of the team have set the bar for extraterrestrial farming. The idea of growing food for human colonies in space could be a reality very soon.” said Chris McKay, planetary scientist of the NASA Ames research centre.

Looks like Sarah and Becky will have to prepare for this onslaught of potatoes!

What else should we harvest on Mars? Share your craziest ideas below!