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Environment

How to Talk About Biotechnology

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Is this something that GMO-fearing foodies and greens can agree with?

It's been said before, but it bears repeating that genetic modification is little more than a new tool in the perennial human endeavor to modify the biology that surrounds us – a project that exploded with the advent of agriculture and the development of crop-breeding techniques now centuries old. The real issue, then, is that genetic modification – like old-school breeding tactics – is an instrument, as equally suited for prudent application as it is dangerous implementation.

It's from a Robert Gonzalez post at i09 that offers a very constructive perspective on the GMO debate. He quotes from some of my writing on the subject, but uses a Boing Boingessay by Maggie Koerth-Baker to highlight larger points about the similarities between conventional breeding and genetic modification techniques, the important one being that we should recognize both as tools,

each with their inherent risks and benefits. Failing to do so can lead to misinformation and confusion; and it can just as easily inspire unnecessary fear.

Go and read the full piece.

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