Wednesday, February 18, 2015

From The Genetic Liberacy Project

The Genetic Literacy Project delivers daily highlights of trending articles and controversies in human and agricultural biotechnology.
GMO seeds boost corn yields more than 40% - Maxx Chatsko | Motley Fool - Throughout human history, as the world’s population has grown, so, too, has the amount of arable land converted into farmland. But we’re reaching an inflection point in agriculture that complicates that simple principle of expansion. The world has nearly exhausted its land reserves available for farming. That means humans will need to find a way to increase the amount of food produced from land already dedicated to…..

Producers of 70% of Africa’s food, women farmers shackled by GMO opponents - Lydia Sasu | Truth about Trade & Technology - As a farmer in Ghana, I see the problems in farming every day. Farmers struggle with everything from the unpredictability of the weather to the poor condition of the roads. Women are critical to food production, but in many places we lack basic rights to land and can’t access loan / credit facilities and agricultural extension services. Perhaps most important, we need access to modern technology. The 21st-century tools that farmers in the United States and many other advanced countries take for granted remain beyond our reach. What we really need, however, is to become a part of the “Gene Revolution,” the global movement toward the adoption of biotechnology in agriculture…..

Young food scientists on why they stood up to Food Babe - Trevor Butterworth | Sense About Science - In late January, a group of students pursuing graduate degrees in food science published an open letter to Vani Hari, aka The Food Babe, an Internet activist who has amassed a huge following by attacking what she perceives as threats to people’s health from the foods they eat. We asked the students—all but one pursuing PhDs in food science—to talk about why wrote their letter, what they thought about Hari’s response, and for their thoughts on the way food is covered in the media. They responded jointly….

GM ryegrass for cows that could boost milk production 15% faces opposition in Australia - Catherine McAloon | ABC (Australia) - Daily farmers in Victoria Australia are debating the pros and cons of genetically modified (GM) ryegrass as peak representative group, United Dairyfarmers of Victoria (UDV), seeks to formulate their policy on adopting new GM pastures. A high energy ryegrass with greater sugar content, which would allow cows to produce more milk, is being developed by the Dairy Futures Co-operative Research Centre and Dairy Australia and is getting close to commercial trial stage…..

Survey of European attitudes on GMO milk suggests opposition softening - Enda Quinn | Irish Independent - Public perceptions about genetically modified (GM) food products is shifting from wariness to a more positive attitude as I discovered when compiling a survey for the Farming Independent over the past few months.  For the survey, I interviewed 100 parents of children under the age of 10 in the greater Dublin area on the topic of genetically modified milk, mimicking human breast milk, from dairy cows. All questions had the initial proviso of: ‘If this GM milk was proven safe by the EU’.  One of the more surprising findings was that 57% of parents said that this GM milk should be allowed into Europe. Even more surprising was that 38% of Irish parents said that they would feed this GM milk to their child….


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