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Food, more food, good Food PDF พิมพ์
เขียนโดย admin   
Tuesday, 03 November 2009

William James Peacock

CSIRO Plant Industry, Australia

MS. Swaminathan, one of India’s greatest biological scientists has said that “every person on our planet has the right to have enough food and more than that, has the right to have enough good food”. The present and future growth of the world’s population, to reach 9 billion before 2050, presents us with probably the greatest and most immediate challenge ever faced by the human race. The challenge is to produce enough food for the global population. The challenge is exacerbated by the fact that we now have conditions of climate change which affect our arable land production systems and also we have no hope of expansion to more arable land. In addition, we require agriculture to be environmentally neutral and energy efficient. If we are to meet this challenge, science is critical. President Obama has recently said “science is more essential for our prosperity, our security, our health, our environment and our quality of life than it has ever been before”.

Research results from the new biology will be keyed to our continuing ability to provide for the food requirements of the world. The needed increases in production (50% - 100%) are not likely to involve new species. It is with existing crop species that we will need to achieve greater yields with greater reliability. The new biology is enabling us to approach an understanding of genetic potential to a degree we have never had before. One of the major new plant breeding tools is genetic modification (GM) where genes are added to crops to protect them against environmental stresses, to protect them against pests and diseases, and to increase the yield and quality of the harvested products.

Throughout the 13 years of GM cropping, extending over 1 billion hectares for that period of time, there have been no reports of adverse environmental or human health consequences, Along with the necessary increases in yield the adjustment of the nutritional value of grains and other crop products is one of the most important tasks ahead. The societal diseases of diabetes 2, colorectal cancer, cardiovascular problems and inflammation conditions are reaching epidemic proportions around the world, resulting in large part from changes in our diets and lifestyle. We should be able to reduce and control many of their bad effects by optimising the nutritional value of our major foods.

We need to ensure that we have an understanding of what is being attempted in each specific case and that each case should receive the highest possible testing regimen for safety and performance. It is time now for trust in our regulatory authorities, just as we have trusted them in non-GM food and agricultural testing up to now.

The GM plant breeding tool is a valuable addition to the armoury of the plant breeder. Its rational deployment in its first phase brought farmers crops with protection against insect pests and against weeds. Soon there will be additional benefits to the farmer with crops being able to use water more efficiently, be more efficiently, be more efficient in taking up nutrients and to have protection against both viral and fungal diseases. Health benefits to consumers are on the way.

The end result is dependent not only on the science but also on national and international policies for GM crops and foods, on investment in the science, both in discovery and delivery and ultimately on consumer acceptance and choice.    


Agricultural Biotechnology International Conference : Agricultural Biotechnology
for Better Living and a Clean Environment ,22-25 September 2009, Queen Sirikit
national convention center, Bangkok, Thailand

แก้ไขล่าสุดเมื่อ ( Tuesday, 03 November 2009 )
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