Home & Garden Home Why Some People Can't Stand Cilantro By Melissa Breyer Editorial Director Hunter College F.I.T., State University of New York Cornell University Melissa Breyer is Treehugger’s editorial director. She is a sustainability expert and author whose work has been published by the New York Times and National Geographic, among others. our editorial process Melissa Breyer Updated October 11, 2018 ©. ACS/YouTube Share Twitter Pinterest Email Home Sustainable Eating Pest Control Natural Cleaning DIY Family Green Living Thrift & Minimalism I taste heaven, you taste soap ... here's the science behind the great cilantroversy. I was shocked, shocked, when slowly, one by one, people whom I generally respected revealed their dislike of cilantro. Dismay, disquiet, disbelief! How could anyone not become weak in the knees when presented with what I think of as human catnip? Not long ago the truth came out when scientists told us that, in fact, some 4 to 14 percent of the population can't stand the beautiful Coriandrum sativum, otherwise known as the world's most divisive herb. Thanks to a genetic mutation, these poor souls taste not a fresh and bright herbaceous bouquet, but soap or dirt – more in the line of raw fat, bugs, or cosmetics. So very sad. So while I have known that there is a genetic explanation, I didn't really understand the mechanics of it until I watched the video below created by PBS Digital and ACS Reactions. It provides a good explanation. For those of you not on Team Cilantro, consider this your talking points ... and impress your naysaying cilantro-loving friends by boasting about your unique version of a single-nucleotide polymorphism in the area of chromosome 11!