Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Good News on the Franken Foods Front

Newsweek has an interesting article about companies like Monsanto and Syngenta that are shifting away from transgenic seeds (those in which genes from one species of organism are inserted into another) and going back to traditional yet modern methods of selective breeding. There is a growing resistance to GMO foods especially in Europe and parts of Asia and Africa but it also because it is gradually becoming apparent that the most widely commercialized GMOs do only two things; resist herbicides and pests and are doing that decreasingly well, as was covered recently covered in the Ethicurean. GMOs aren’t living up to the yield gains promised.

“Conventional breeding still does better at building up qualities that require a complex suite of genes, such as the ability to fight off certain insects or to resist drought, which involves a host of genes that determine the way plants take up and manage water,” writes Margolis. And thanks to high-tech tools like marker-assisted breeding, “traditional farming still has a brilliant future.”
This is great news for the world as it has been readily apparent for some time that the GMOs were a bad idea from the get go.

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