Demographers from the World Bank, the United Nations, and the Global Committee of Parliamentarians on Population Development all predict that between now and the year 2000 the world's population will soar by at least 20% to more than 6 billion, with 90% of this growth occurring in developing countries. With this growth, of course, will come an increased strain on already burdened food supplies, especially in the developing world, where hunger is a major problem. A decade from now, the current approach to alleviating world hunger - shipping surplus food from the "have" countries to the "have-nots" - will no longer be an effective solution.

On the other hand, agricultural research leading to increased crop yields is more promising as a long-term approach to overcoming inadequate food production, one that the biotechnology revolution of the last two decades has put within reach. Today, researchers are applying their skills with the...

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