The major functions of roots are: 1) anchorage in soil; 2) storage of energy resources such as the carrot and sugar beet; 3) absorption of water and minerals from the soil; and 4) conduction of water and minerals to and from the shoot. The roots store the food (energy resources) of the plant. The food is either used by the roots themselves or digested, and the products of digestion are transported back up through the phloem to the above-ground portions of the plant. The roots of some plants are harvested as food for human consumption. Plant hormones are synthesized in the meristematic regions of the roots and transported upward in the xylem to the aerial part of the plant to stimulate growth and development.