Biology Fortified, Inc. is an independent, non-profit organization devoted to providing factual information and fostering discussion about issues in biology, with a particular emphasis on plant genetics and genetic engineering in agriculture. Find out more on our About page.
Join us as we learn about agriculture and biology with Frank N. Foode™, your friendly neighborhood genetically modified organism.
Karl Haro von Mogel
13 May 2013
Today, the Supreme Court of the United States issued their ruling on the Bowman v Monsanto case, siding unanimously in favor of Monsanto. The court rejected Bowman’s arguments that Monsanto’s patent “exhausted” when he purchased seeds from a grain elevator to plant on his farm, and affirmed that the act of growing a crop of [...]Karl Haro von Mogel
7 May 2013
KQED Quest, based in San Francisco, has just posted a half-hour special on GMOs called Next Meal: Engineering your Food, by Gabriela Quirós. In the wake of proposition 37 in California there has been a lot more public awareness of genetically engineered crops, but little public education about it. (Just think what those millions spent [...]Karl Haro von Mogel
3 May 2013
This week, readers of the Biofortified Blog are in for a treat. The Journal Nature has a special feature on genetically engineered crops, complete with editorials, perspectives, and an article on the next generation of these crops featuring some people who you may find familiar. Here are a few snippets to give you a taste [...]
6 May 2013
A report from an activist group called Safe Food Foundation (SFF) came out last fall that caused a minor stir upon it’s first release. They claimed that they had unearthed an issue with GMO wheat being studied by the Australian CSIRO researchers. The wheat under investigation has shown to provide improvements in digestive health in [...]Steve Savage
29 Apr 2013
Cloned fruit is widely sold in grocery stores. Some of it is even cloned mutant fruit. None of these fruits are labeled as such. They aren’t even regulated. You can’t avoid this kind of fruit by going to Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s. Should you be concerned?
Actually, almost all fruit is cloned for good [...]Anastasia Bodnar
18 Apr 2013
Another paper comparing organic and conventional tomatoes (sort of) was published in PLOS One on 20 February 2013: The impact of organic farming on quality of tomatoes is associated to increased oxidative stress during fruit development.
In contrast to so many other studies that aim to see if there is a difference between conventional and organic produce, [...]
15 May 2013
Everywhere I go, I hear farmers argue over the word ‘sustainable’. So much so, that I really want to puke. It gets brought up at policy meetings, on social media sites, and in blog entries. When I hear farmers discussing what it means, I only hear Charlie Brown’s teacher… wha wha wha wha whaa, wha [...]Guest Posts
18 Apr 2013
Almost everything we do in life must focus on sustainability in order to guarantee the possibilities of continuing those practices in the future. However, lately it seems the term sustainability has become more of a buzz word that implies something better, thus opening the doors for advertising and marketers to take advantage of certain elements [...]Pamela Ronald
15 Apr 2013
An Excerpt by Jon Entine
It’s a challenge to name a more influential food writer than The New York Times‘ Mark Bittman—nor one less informed and more damaging to the public opinion on the issue of genetically modified crops and foods. Simply said, he is a scourge on science.
Those are strong words, and not [...]
Karl Haro von Mogel
15 May 2013
At the 2013 Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) Conference, I had the unique opportunity to meet and interview Neal Carter, President of Okanagan Specialty Fruits, makers of the Arctic® Apple, and also attend a protest of the same apple organized by the Organic Consumers Association. I interviewed Mike Durshmid who was leading the protest, and asked [...]Karl Haro von Mogel
8 May 2013
There’s a new genetically engineered potato in town that doesn’t brown when cut or fried, nor does it make acrylamide. J. R. Simplot Company petitioned the USDA to deregulate their Innate™ potatoes, and the public comment period has just been opened up on that petition. We sent Simplot some questions about their new potatoes and [...]Karl Haro von Mogel
28 Apr 2013
Gene Giacomelli brought his research group’s Lunar Greenhouse to the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) 2013 Convention at McCormick Place in Chicago. Built in Arizona, this greenhouse can be set up underground on the Moon or Mars to grow food, cycle nutrients, and produce oxygen. It can produce one salad per day and also provide a [...]
12 May 2013
Editor’s note: This post was originally published at Thought + Food. Republished with permission from the author.
By Arpita Bhattacharjya
Flowers are traditional, yes, but this Mother’s Day I am thinking about bananas. Specifically, the plan to grow iron fortified bananas in India. This plan, predictably, is being met with resistance in some quarters. But, first, some background: India is [...]Anastasia Bodnar
25 Apr 2013
On Twitter the other day, I was told that “moms choose organic” for their kids. I’m a mom (almost) and I don’t choose organic. Personally, I dislike the implication that I am doing wrong by not buying organic and I think it causes harm to spread such an idea because it might discourage people from eating healthy [...]MaryM
22 Aug 2012
The other day I found myself looking through the plant patents held by the Zaiger’s Genetics team. The Zaigers, a family of plant breeders led by a UC Davis Plant Pathology graduate, have developed some very cool fruits. You may know of the pluot, and apparently they have a peach with low acid that has [...]
Science & Society
15 May 2013
Have you ever read an article, attended a panel discussion, or watched a tv show and thought: “I really wish they’d featured an expert” ?
I can’t say if it’s intentional or unintentional, but there definitely seem to be many cases where a panel discussing aspects of agriculture consists of representatives from EWG, UCS, CFS, etc and there might, [...]Patrick Cournoyer
15 May 2013
The sweeping cuts in federal spending known as the sequester are already taking a toll on scientific research. Jennifer Fletcher, a professor at the University of California, Berkeley stationed at the USDA-funded Plant Gene Expression Center, faces the sudden challenge of slashing direct research costs by 40 percent.
“I’m paying part of a research associate’s [...]Becca Harrison
15 Oct 2012
Dr. Lillian Lee, a professor of Computer Science at Cornell University, contacted me at the end of the summer to share her recently published study, Hedge detection as a lens on framing in the GMO debates: A position paper. She had out-of-the-blue read about my research interests on LinkedIn, and wanted to share this unique, interdisciplinary [...]
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