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Revolution on ice

The promises made for GM crops are the same as those made 20 years ago—and they remain unfulfilled

By Helen Wallace   December 2007

The story of genetically modified “golden rice” is indeed shocking, as Dick Taverne says, but not, as he argues, because public reluctance to eat GM crops in Europe has somehow denied a life-saving technology to people in developing countries.

Golden rice was launched on the world with much fanfare in 1999, with claims that it could cure blindness in millions of children brought on by vitamin A deficiency. But the levels of beta-carotene in golden rice were far too low to make an impact on this deficiency. Although scientists have recently succeeded in increasing the levels of beta-carotene, there is…

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