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Biotech Crops to Lessen Hunger in RP
Written by Loren   
Thursday, 05 February 2009

Senior program officer of the International Service for the Acquisition of AgriBiotech Applications (ISAAA), Dr. Rhodora Aldemita said that biotechnology is a most feasible alternative system to boost yields of crops that have been genetically enhanced to provide consumers with adequate nutrients.

Aldemita said that agricultural biotechnology has succeeded in increasing yields while reducing dependence on chemical-based fertilizers, pesticides, nematicides and herbicides.

Papaya ring spot virus (PRSV)-resistant papaya and Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) corn are just two of the successful genetically modified crops.

Work is also being done to develop maize with low phytic acid increased iron absorption, canola and soybean seeds with increased lysine, an essential amino acid usually absent in grains; iron-rich rice with soybean ferritin gene potato with increased inulin, a low-calorie fiber for increased mineral absorption and colon-cancer prevention.

Aldemita added that through advances in plant biotechnology it is now more than possible to improve the nutritional value of a crop and also helps in ensuring the crops reach more people in their best state through the introduction of delayed ripening characteristics. [via]


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