Feeds

UK.gov serves up GM food as price hike fix

Brown pushes Greens off plate while slamming food waste

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

The government's former chief science adviser Sir David King has said genetically-modified crops represent our best chance for improving yields sufficiently to deal with current food price problems.

According to the FT, King said: "There is only one technology likely to deliver [the yield increases needed] and that is GM.... We need more crop per drop [of water] because of the fresh water problem. Unless you move into plant technologies to develop these crops, food provision is not going to increase."

"The future lies there [with GM]. And this is urgent."

The comments coincide with the publication of a Cabinet Office report, Food Matters: Towards a Strategy for the 21st Century, which also supports a softer line on GM production.

The Cabinet Office report said: "Further advances in science and technology are likely to impact on food production, potentially increasing yields and making food healthier and more environmentally sustainable." But the report also notes that no such crop is approved for commercial growing in the UK, and "public trust in the new technologies is a key issue".

The report also notes that British consumers waste a third of the food they buy - 6.7m tonnes. This costs the average family £420 a year and creates greenhouse gases equivalent to one car in five on British roads.

Prime Minister Gordon Brown said that although action was needed to improve food supplies UK households could help by reducing unnecessary demand, or wasted food. Brown is on his way the G8 meeting in Japan where he also predicted to call for a moratorium on the use of biofuels.

The report also predicts a growing role for nanotechnology and predicts non-edible nanotech - like coatings on packaging - is likely to be less contentious and will therefore grow quickly.

It said the move to biofuel was "creating a growing, inelastic source of demand for grain and oilseeds that will further tighten the global balance of supply and demand". It predicts grain prices will more closely follow oil prices in future. ®

Intelligent flash storage arrays

More from The Register

next story
WHY did Sunday Mirror stoop to slurping selfies for smut sting?
Tabloid splashes, MP resigns - but there's a BIG copyright issue here
Spies, avert eyes! Tim Berners-Lee demands a UK digital bill of rights
Lobbies tetchy MPs 'to end indiscriminate online surveillance'
How the FLAC do I tell MP3s from lossless audio?
Can you hear the difference? Can anyone?
Inequality increasing? BOLLOCKS! You heard me: 'Screw the 1%'
There's morality and then there's economics ...
Google hits back at 'Dear Rupert' over search dominance claims
Choc Factory sniffs: 'We're not pirate-lovers - also, you publish The Sun'
EU to accuse Ireland of giving Apple an overly peachy tax deal – report
Probe expected to say single-digit rate was unlawful
While you queued for an iPhone 6, Apple's Cook sold shares worth $35m
Right before the stock took a 3.8% dive amid bent and broken mobe drama
prev story

Whitepapers

A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.