What IS wrong with biofortification?

Well, it all started with a paper with more or less that title from Maarten van Ginkel & Jeremy Cherfas last year. Their answer was that biofortification doesn’t work, costs yield and risks genetic uniformity. Ouch. So what to do? Diversify diets, of course.

That was followed by a rebuttal from Prasanna Boddupalli, Jill Cairns and Natalia Palacios-Rojas of CIMMYT. Unfortunately, their letter is not open access, but if you want to know what van Ginkel and Cherfas think of their arguments, they’ve just published a counter:

In conclusion, the charges raised by Boddupalli et al. are exactly those we would expect to be motivated by concerns about funding rather than by an interest in scientific research to benefit farmers and consumers. This emphasis on biofortification as even part of the solution to the continuing problem of hidden hunger inhibits the alternative we presented; a holistic approach based on diversified, nutritious, nutrient dense, sustainable, affordable diets that can address hidden hunger effectively to deliver better health.

This will run and run.

One Reply to “What IS wrong with biofortification?”

  1. Smallholder farmers here in Asia (I’m in Thailand) are wondering if they’re included in proposed WEF ban on growing own food.
    WEF: just order your food online y’all.

    Couldn’t make it up !!

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