When I saw the headline, I thought it was a carrot as big as a Chevy SUV.
US scientists have created a genetically-modified carrot which delivers a much higher dose of calcium than the bog-standard carrot and may help "ward off conditions such as brittle bone disease and osteoporosis", the BBC reports. The team at the Baylor College of Medicine in Texas claims in the Proceedings of the National …
Could this herald the dawn of a whole range of "superveggies" bent on humanity's decline? Nature (sic) fights back against the aging but mechanically enhanced Japanese farmer. Indeed, science fiction is abound with tales of future societies split between those who spurn or embrace genetic modification, the former relying on technological marvels such as the Strap-on "farming" suit to defeat the threat from the ungodly Supercarrot!
I for one, am very afraid.
This will only lead to monster rabbits.......
When will the media/government/et al finally wakeup to the real reason people don't like GM crops. It's not nimbism, puritanism or luditism its the worry that cross fertilisation with regular crops will causing potentially devastating mutations.
(think susceptibility to disease rather then growing legs and running amok)
It has long been known that root crops grown near some highways are dangerous due to lead absorption. Many abatement programs for metal contaminated soils and waters now use crop plants bred or engineered to optomize absorption.
Since the metals in alluvial and sedimentary soils can include gold and silver, innovation in this area should prove attractive financially.
it-connection, every piece of electronics contains lead.
paris hilton connection, i danced with her.
The quality of much of the produce on the shelves is poor, organic produce tastes better and is more nutrituous.
Rather than mess around with GM, how about the EU subsidises UK farmers to make the transition to organic farming? (the transition requires the land to be left for a period of time).
Are these the same people who want to ban the sale of vitamins (or tell you they are not necessary with a 'balanced diet')?
Easier and safer than genetic manipulation of crops, with unknown consequences, would be just to pop a pill each day.
Of course, there's no real money in that, is there?
When cross pollination spreads this trait to the surrounding crops and it turns out to be a evolutionary advantage to them we will all be eating lead laced food, but then again perhaps some people already are?
RE: Industrial scale farming
Yep that is the big media distraction from the real danger of GM.
no you can dream of immortality whilst eating as much chalk dust as you like, doesn't bother me I'll carry on smoking drinking and living before I die.
In the not too distant past, a farmer got sued by a bio-tech compagny for having planted crops GM crops without a licence. Turns out HIS crops got poluted by a farmer some way off using the GM crops. Polenisation did the rest. He contersued saying the GM crops made his entire production of (bio) crop worthless.
Wonder how that turned out in the end. But I can see RIAA type lawsuits becoming the norm
Yes indeed, I remember the article well, except it was about pigs. At the time I felt an opportunity was being needlessly wasted and suggested they stopped messing around with glow-in-the-dark pigs and genetically engineered fluorescent dogs. A far more marketable product.
Because let's face it, except perhaps for a flying car, nothing would be cooler than producing your very own glow-in-the-dark dog. IMO this would even trump a 72" (6 foot) flat panel TV.
To fully exploit such a market the green would be good for a start, but the more superficial amongst us would soon be demanding new colours or even species.
Glow-in-the-dark pet humans (often mistakenly called children or babies) would surely follow.
DNA has been randomly mutating for eons. That's one of the processes that drives evolution. I know of no "organic" foods that cause cancer, do you? GM just directs and speeds up the process. And GM crops go through a lot of testing before they are judged fit for human consumption.
(The first person to mention Thalidomide will need to remove my boot from his butt. You think they haven't improved testing standards in the decades since then?)
And could Mr Organic Will Save Us please answer how we're going to grow enough food "organically" to feed the teeming billions of humans crowding this planet? Without GM, without artificial pesticides and without artificial fetilizers? Just 'cause a niche market of wealthy Westerners can afford to indulge in their taste for organic veggies, doesn't mean that the Chinese or Africans, for example, can do the same.
Given how arid most of China and Africa are, they need to make the most of each square meter of fertile land, to get enough to feed themselves. Organic food, which requires more land for the same output, is a luxury to them.
By using pesticides you do not kill all pests, you only kill the weedy little ones. Just like the supper bugs in the hospitals you leave the git hard mega bugs free to bread with one another. Long term this increases your problems as sooner or later the git hard mega bugs will cause famines and pandemics.
The problem with organic farming is that it is not economically viable because of the squeeze capitalist giants have put on the food industry. Organic food would represent a higher percentage of your salary being spent on less food, but considering the rising levels of obesity is that really a bad thing? with all the Land that is unused as there is no financially viable use for it, is it really that we could not grow enough food for a healthy population, or is it that we could not grow enough food for an fat and wasteful population at the price they have become accustom to paying?
Evolution takes place of thousands of years, genetic modifications in one species often require adaptation in others. This is also true of selectively breading animals and plants, it takes thousands of years to end up with chickens and pigs, which have given the rest of the environment thousands of years to adapt to the mutants.
Industrial scale GM developments can take place in a few years, lets suppose that high calcium crops take of in a big way, seeds are planted across the globe and in a hundred years there is 10% more calcium in all vegetation on earth. Anything that starts life in an egg will die in an egg. Birds, insects and reptiles will not have had enough time to evolve to cope with the thicker harder shells that the higher calcium diets produce.
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