Did God Make Carrots Orange?

Genesis 1:12

“And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good.”

Did God make carrots orange? The answer to this question is far more complicated than you might think. A short, pedantic and unhelpful answer might be: “Yes and no!”

In the wild, carrot roots are smaller than cultivated roots and are often more pink or purple in color. The outside of the wild carrot will also tend to be woodier. So domestic carrots have been selectively bred to have a thinner skin, a larger taproot and a more orange color – though some carrots are colored white or purple.

But this is clearly not an example of evolution. A carrot is still a carrot. So the genes to produce an orange taproot must have been created by God in the original plant, even if they were recessive, compared to other colors.

But carrots are part of a large family of plants, called Apiaceae. This family includes cilantro, parsley, anise and fennel. It also includes a number of plants which are inedible or even poisonous. In fact, even with carrots, there is debate about whether or not the leaves are safe to eat. But, biblically, we know that the created kind, or baramin, is usually (though not always) identified at the family level. So it is possible that all of these well known herbs and vegetables were descended from plants which may have been quite different – though this is not evolution; this is speciation. Ultimately, however, we affirm that God made this remarkably useful plant.