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Chewing gum: Unsustainable harvesting

Chewing gum: Unsustainable harvesting

By the mid-1930s, unsustainable harvesting methods used to increase yields killed almost a quarter of Mexico's sapodilla trees, and scientists predicted total forest depletion within four decades.

Chewing gum manufacturers turned to cheaper synthetic bases made from petroleum, wax and other substances.

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MORE IDEAS FROM THE SAME ARTICLE

Modern-day chewing gum was invented by Thomas Adams Sr., who got a supply of chicle. They first tried to vulcanize the chicle into some useful industrial substance but found a better idea of boiling and hand-rolling it into pieces of chewing gum.

Chewing gum has been around for hundreds of years in the form of chicle, a resin obtained from the sapodilla tree in southern Mexico and Central America.

As a marketing gimmick, young soap salesman Wiliam Wrigley Jr.decided that his company would give free chewing gum to vendors who place large soap orders.

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