Salt production started in ancient China

Aug 23, 2005

A Harvard University study reports large-scale salt production occurred in inland China more than 2,000 years ago, the earliest date yet uncovered.

Salt is an important mineral for both nutrition and food preservation, and scientists believe salt production and trade are critical in the development of complex societies.

Harvard researcher Rowan Flad and colleagues said they found multiple lines of evidence of large-scale salt production at an archeological site near Zhongba, along the Yangzi River in central China.

The chemical compositions of the soil and nearby brine were found to be similar to other salt-production facilities. Likewise, the researchers said the form and composition of various ceramics found at the site are similar to salt production pottery discovered in other regions of the world.

The scientists say their study indicates salt production was a significant activity at the site during the first millennium B.C., and possibly earlier.

The article appears in this week's online early edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Copyright 2005 by United Press International

Explore further: A two generation lens: Current state policies fail to support families with young children

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Studying fracking's effects, up close and personal

Sep 05, 2014

Ten years ago, hydraulic fracturing barely existed. Today 45,000 fracked wells produce natural gas, providing energy for millions of homes and businesses, and nearly a quarter of the nation's electricity. ...

Biomarkers of the deep

Jul 25, 2014

Tucked away in the southwest corner of Spain is a unique geological site that has fascinated astrobiologists for decades. The Iberian Pyrite Belt (IPB) in Spain's Río Tinto area is the largest known deposit ...

Recommended for you

New hadrosaur noses into spotlight

Sep 19, 2014

Call it the Jimmy Durante of dinosaurs – a newly discovered hadrosaur with a truly distinctive nasal profile. The new dinosaur, named Rhinorex condrupus by paleontologists from North Carolina State Univer ...

Scholar tracks the changing world of gay sexuality

Sep 19, 2014

With same-sex marriage now legalized in 19 states and laws making it impossible to ban homosexuals from serving in the military, gay, lesbian and bisexual people are now enjoying more freedoms and rights than ever before.

User comments : 0