Biotech buzz: the week’s top stories

February 1, 2019

Bangladesh will approve Golden Rice

Farmers in Bangladesh will soon be able to grow Golden Rice, according to Dr. Abdur Razzak, the nation’s agriculture minister. The vitamin A-enriched rice will be easier to cultivate in coastal areas with saline soils, he noted.

Nigeria adopts its first GM food crop

Nigeria has approved the pod borer-resistant cowpea, its first GM food crop. And that means reduced pesticide use, higher yields and greater availability of the poor man’s meat.

Ghana advances NEWEST rice

Ghana expects to have NEWEST rice in the hands of farmers within four years. The crop is nitrogen use-efficient, drought- tolerant and can grow in saline soil.

CRISPR effective against plant viruses

The gene-editing tool CRISPR appears to be effective in developing plants resistant to a virus that is destroying banana crops globally. And Uganda is launching an innovative research program using CRISPR to breed local varieties of cassava resistant to two devastating viruses.

A CRISPR approach to brewing

Gene editing tools are helping scientists brew beer with a smaller environmental footprint.

Just the facts

A new study suggests that value-free education about the science of biotech can improve attitudes toward GMO foods.

Transforming farmers’ lives

Farmer Edwin Paraluman tells how Bt maize has benefitted the Philippines by boosting yields, eliminating corn imports and improving the livelihoods of smallholder farmers.

Senator pushes for stricter GM salmon labels

Though the new GMO labeling apply to the fast-growing AquaBounty salmon, Sen.Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) is continuing her protectionist approach to the state’s wild salmon fisheries by reintroducing a bill that would tighten labeling laws on that one product.

Medical role for GM chickens

Researchers in Scotland have genetically modified chickens to produce therapeutic proteins in their eggs, hoping to aid the lower-cost production of medications for animals and humans.