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Week in Review

B4FA Week in Review – 9 August 2017

August 9th, 2017 / B4FA

In a week when it has been reported that climate change could lead to a reduction in protein in staple crops, as well as some other key nutritional components including iron and zinc, Professor Paul Vincelli of the University of Kentucky argues that genetic engineering is an environmentally-friendly choice and …

B4FA Week in Review – 2 August 2017

August 2nd, 2017 / B4FA.org

The International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT) scientist and wheat breeder Matthew Reynolds published an opinion piece in Science this week, exhorting scientists to adopt a ”more internationally oriented and integrated approach to leverage technology, expertise and infrastructure with greater efficiency and purpose,” according to a press release published by …

B4FA Week in Review – 26 July 2017

July 26th, 2017 / B4FA.org

Many worthy people objected to the production of hybrids on the ground that it was an impious interference with the laws of Nature. – Maxwell Masters, 1899
This quote by botanist and taxonomist Maxwell Masters opens a lucid and useful essay published by plant pathologist and geneticist Pamela Ronald in Geographical Review …

B4FA Week in Review – 19 July 2017

July 19th, 2017 / B4FA.org

A week ago, the United Nations celebrated its annual World Population Day, which seeks to focus attention on the urgency and importance of population issues, including the issue of food security and sustainability. For the occasion, IFPRI posted a brief report based on featuring an analysis generated by its International Model for Policy Analysis …

B4FA Week in Review – 12 July 2017

July 12th, 2017 / B4FA.org

Lots of interesting biotech news from around the world this week. A genetically modified banana fortified with Vitamin A has been developed in Queensland, Australia, and is to be grown in Uganda, in the hopes of improving the health of East African children. The highland or East African cooking banana variety, …

B4FA Week in Review – 5 July 2017

July 5th, 2017 / B4FA.org

More positive responses are rolling in for the documentary Food Evolution, which opened in United States cinemas in late June. The film is trying to encourage fact-based public discourse around GM, while discouraging polarized debate and dispelling fear. (See “Documentary ‘Food Evolution’ turns to reason to discuss GMO controversy”, LA Times.) Food …

B4FA Week in Review – 28 June 2017

June 28th, 2017 / B4FA.org

Congratulations to African Development Bank President Akinwumi Adesina, who has just won the prestigious World Food Prize in honour of his work to improve crop yields and incomes for farmers in Africa. Adesina grew up poor, the son of a Nigerian farm worker. He then earned graduate degrees in agricultural …

B4FA Week in Review – 21 June 2017

June 21st, 2017 / B4FA.org

In a development that should add interest to discussions about seed patents, plant breeders in Germany have developed open-source plant seeds, according to Science magazine. “The idea behind the open-source license is that scientists and breeders can experiment with seeds –and improve them – unimpeded by legal restrictions,” states the article. The …

B4FA Week in Review – 14 June 2017

June 14th, 2017 / B4FA.org

A new peer-review report recently published by PG Economics shows that over the last 20 years, crop biotechnology has significantly reduced agriculture’s environmental impact and stimulated economic growth. The report, GM Crops: Global Socio-economic and Environmental impacts 1996-2015, is authored by Graham Brookes and Peter Barfoot. Among the benefits they …

B4FA Week in Review – 7 June 2017

June 7th, 2017 / B4FA.org

This week, news was dominated by US President Donald Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris climate accord. The Conversation published an overview (“How bad could Trump’s Paris Agreement withdrawal be?”) by climate scientist and climate policy scholar Robert Koop, who puts the situation in perspective with best- to worst-case scenarios from …