Crop Biotech Update

New Book Promotes GMOs and Organic Farming

May 30, 2008
A husband and wife team effort to resolve the need for increased global food production, while minimizing environmental impact has been written down in a new book "Tomorrow's Table: Organic Farming, Genetics, and the Future for Food". The authors, both agricultural experts at the University of California, Davis assert that both genetically engineered and organically grown crops can boost food production in an environmentally conscious way.

Raoul Adamchak, an organic farmer and manager of UC Davis' organic farm believes that, "While it is important that we carefully evaluate each new genetically engineered crop on a case-by-case basis to assess nutritional, ecological or social consequences, it is equally important that we not ignore the potential that this technology offers for reducing fertilizers and pesticides in the environment." His wife, Pamela Ronald, a professor of plant pathology and an expert on rice genetics added that, "Genetic engineering enables us to introduce critically important traits into crop plants -- traits such as resistance to disease and insects or tolerance for environmental stresses like flood, droughts, cold, heat and salty water and soils. It has been very difficult to develop these traits in crops through conventional breeding."

For details about the book which recounts the one year in the lives of the Ronald-Adamchak family and how they develop the criteria for the use of genetic engineering in agriculture, see press release at http://www.news.ucdavis.edu/search/news_detail.lasso?id=8677.