The good news? Researchers have worked out a method to genetically modify cassava plants that causes them to produce significantly larger amounts of protein. In practical terms, this means that within a decade African farmers might have a staple crop that can counter protein-energy malnutrition in African children – and protein-energy malnutrition is nasty. Not to mention deceptively treatable, if you can make sure that the kids get the protein. Which is why the plan is to distribute the plants to the farmers themselves, thus distributing the extra protein from the bottom up.
The bad news? The above means that said researchers will have to fight groups like Greenpeace every step of the way on this, as Greenpeace in particular is adamantly and explicitly against releasing genetically-modified crops “into the environment” – which, again, is the plan of the researchers. That would be because Greenpeace gets almost no money from African children with preventable dietary deficiencies, and quite a bit of money from scientifically-illiterate, white Euro-American liberals whose interest in anything African is directly proportional to how… sanitized it is.
Hey. Be grateful that I didn’t say ‘bleached.’
Moe Lane (crosspost)
PS: Mind you, if moving forward Greenpeace wants to start explicitly repudiating its Luddite fanaticism, here would be an excellent place to start…