Monday, April 26, 2010

Bloggin' from Malawi and South Africa for the next 10 days or so


 I will be leaving for a business trip to Malawi with a small stop in South Africa. Malawi is a very poor country in Southern Africa, bordered by Tanzania, Mozambique and Zambia. 

I will be starting a project examining the potential introduction of a genetically modified cotton that expresses a protein that is toxic to a group of insects that cause damage in cotton production. The protein, derived from a soil bacteria Bacillus thuringiensis, does not cause any impact on humans or animals.

The later has been quite demonstrated by food safety reviews done by USDA, FDA and EPA, as well as, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) and other regulatory agencies around the world. The use of this crop, Bt cotton, can and does signficantly reduce (nasty) pesticide applications for controlling the specific worms (pink bollworm and other lepidopteran insects).

The reason I am going into this much detail about this technology is the report by the President of Bolivia, Mr. Evo Morales, that transgenic crops cause homosexuality and hair loss in humans. Besides being a ridiculous statement as it completely disregards safety studies around the world, the fact that homosexuality is not a "disease" and that it is ilogical and inaccurate information - no transgenic crop expresses hormones and even if this were true, what would be the impact of  "feminization" hormones on women?...see the absurd argument in itself- but that this is just one sample of a well funded campaign to attack not only transgenics or biotechnology, but technology and innovation in general. If you want a recipe for condemning humanity to living in the stone age, just curtail human inventiveness and see what happens....

Will try to keep u p with my blog these days in Malawi...

No comments:

Post a Comment