Most soldiers in the biotech revolution think the public will eventually accept genetically modified (GM) foods, thereby ending hostilities. However, science must first offer something of value, such as improved nutrition. Just making life easier for farmers with pest-resistant crops won't outweigh real or imagined risks to people or butterflies. That's the message of a new consumer poll done by Roper Starch Worldwide for the American Farm Bureau Federation.1

Metabolic or nutritional genomics--using genes to improve the nutritional value of plants--excites Dean DellaPenna, professor of biochemistry at the University of Nevada, Reno.2 He's even testified before Congress about it. Says DellaPenna, "I'm enormously hopeful. This has the potential like very few other things to benefit mankind." DellaPenna has reason to be enthusiastic: Recent reports, including one from his own laboratory, point to improved plant output traits in the form of extra vitamins.

Easy as A and E...

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