Genetically Modified Trees

Eucalyptus macrocarpaYes you read that right, no longer satisfied with creating unsafe plants for us to eat, genetic engineers are now unleashing frankentrees, per T. V. Padma’s report for SciDev.Net:

Genetically modified (GM) trees have been engaging both last week’s COP-MOP 6 on the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety and COP-11 on the Convention on Biological Diversity. And Isis Alvarez, from the Global Forest Coalition, advises some caution in a paper that reviews GM tree research in Latin America and was circulated at a side event in the Hyderabad.

The first thought that occurred to me was: does Latin America need GM forest trees any more than India needs GM brinjal (eggplant)? But leaving that aside, countries see potential for biotechnology in the forestry sector, just as in agriculture.

According to Alvarez, most known experiments in Latin America include Eucalyptus species, but several firms are also working on poplars, pines, acacias and fruit trees. Private funding dominates GM tree research and genetic patents and so little information is available, Alvarez says.

Brazil leads, with 48 per cent of global patents in the sector, next only to the US with 53 per cent. Chile too has seen a rapid increase, with both private sector as well organised consortia of academic and business institutions engaged in GM trees. Mexico has been working for some years on GM trees, and Colombia has expressed interest in working in the sector. So have Argentina and Uruguay…

[continues at SciDev.Net]

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  • kowalityjesus

    I secretly hoped that the attention span of Monsanto would be too short to bother with trees. I guessed that they would reason their round of crops would end farming on earth (or at least irreparably sour public opinion to GM plants) before meaningful studies of mature, engineered, hybrid trees could take place.

  • kowalityjesus

    I secretly hoped that the attention span of Monsanto would be too short to bother with trees. I guessed that they would reason their round of crops would end farming on earth (or at least irreparably sour public opinion to GM plants) before meaningful studies of mature, engineered, hybrid trees could take place.

  • Phantom

    They want to patent all plant life, if they get away with it any land owner will pay royalties for what ever plant is growing. All governments will owe big time to private companies, in turn that is every one.

    Monsanto is doing this, knowing it will be released into the wild. This is a test to see if you, the people, will catch on. If you are oblivious to their plans they will continue with other plant species and release into the wild.

    In time they will own vast National Forest Reserves world wide. This is the only way they can acquire
    these lands.

    You have been warned.

  • Phantom

    They want to patent all plant life, if they get away with it any land owner will pay royalties for what ever plant is growing. All governments will owe big time to private companies, in turn that is every one.

    Monsanto is doing this, knowing it will be released into the wild. This is a test to see if you, the people, will catch on. If you are oblivious to their plans they will continue with other plant species and release into the wild.

    In time they will own vast National Forest Reserves world wide. This is the only way they can acquire
    these lands.

    You have been warned.