Feeding billions of people isn’t an easy task. Farming isn’t actually the hardest part. Food distribution and food waste are much more challenging than simply growing more food for people. It’s good that we have multiple biotech solutions for making plants and animals that are easier to raise and grow, but some of the concerns about genetically modified organisms (GMOs) aren’t totally unfounded. Turning back the clock on genetic research isn’t going to happen, but we should also keep an eye on what’s going on.
- Dupont and Caribou Biosciences are working on CRISPR technology to modify the genes of food crops, predicting that CRIPSR GMO foods will be on dinner plates by 2020. Genetically modified corn and wheat plants are already being grown in greenhouses, and many other plants are being tested, too: soybeans, rice, tomatoes, potatoes — even allergy-free peanuts. The resulting plants have no genes from other species, so it may be much easier to avoid GMO regulations with these kind of gene-edited crops. [url]
- Yum yum. A succulent red marine algae called dulse looks like translucent red lettuce, is high in protein, and tastes like bacon when cooked. This strain of dulse is patented, but the claims don’t mention its bacon-y goodness. So get back in the lab and start creating more bacon-flavored species, already! [url]
- Many scientists are hard pressed to find the harm in creating genetically modified organisms — because genes are genes. However, there are still concerns with monoculture crops and creating a food supply chain that is dominated by a handful of companies. [url]
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