As CO2 increases, rice loses B vitamins and other nutrients | Science News


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As CO2 increases, rice loses B vitamins and other nutrients

Nations most dependent on rice could see nutrient shortfalls by 2100

4:17pm, May 23, 2018
rice paddy

FACING THE FUTURE  White pipes in a Japanese rice paddy are designed to release extra CO2, creating a little patch of simulated future atmospheres to see how that affects crop nutrients.

By the end of this century, rice may not deliver the same B vitamin levels that it does today. Protein and certain minerals will dwindle, too, new data suggest.

Testing higher carbon dioxide concentrations in experimental rice paddies in China predicts losses in four vitamins — B1, B2, B5 and B9 — an international team reports May 23 in Science Advances. Adding results from similar experiments in Japan, the researchers also note an average 10.3 percent decline in protein, an 8 percent fall in iron and a 5.1 percent fall in zinc, supporting previous studies of rice and other crops (SN: 4/1/17, p. 14). Two bright spots: Vitamin B6 levels remained unchanged and vitamin E increased.

In experimental setups nicknamed FACE (free-air CO₂ enrichment) in China

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