Food and Agriculture in 2 Minutes
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The power of gene editing
An article from tech news site Digital Trends explores gene editing’s potential to solve world hunger. Specifically citing CRISPR technology, it notes how these innovations can help produce crops more sustainably to meet rising demand and provide solutions to common livestock diseases. It contends gene editing technology can help breed plants that are more tolerant to drought or other impacts of climate change to help meet the demand for food.
Los Angeles Unified
The Los Angeles Unified School District is again facing pressure from outside groups wanting to influence its food purchasing. Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, an activist group that promotes a vegan diet, is suing the district in an effort to stop it from serving processed meats. The district’s inspector general has previously warned against food sourcing dictated by individuals or groups, which it associates with a decline in student meal participation and an increase in food costs.
McDonald’s antibiotic stance
While popular fast food chain McDonald’s has committed to reducing antibiotic use in its chicken supply, a group of investors is calling on it to make those same changes in its beef and pork supplies. McDonald’s has advised shareholders to vote against the proposal at its May annual meeting. The company notes there are obstacles to such a policy change, including the lack of a guaranteed supply of meat from animals raised in that manner. McDonald’s says it will continue to work with farmers to find the best production methods.
The Iowa Farm Bureau reports the new interactive map tool developed by the U.S. Geological Survey displays declining levels of nitrate and phosphorus in Iowa’s waterways since the implementation of the Clean Water Act in 1972. Iowa Farm Bureau environmental policy advisor Rick Robinson commends the state’s farmers on helping improve water quality, and emphasizes that there still remains progress to be made.
I’m Maya Menon with v-Fluence, a global provider of food and ag intelligence.