The Food Evolution documentary, directed by Oscar-nominated filmmaker Scott Hamilton Kennedy and narrated by pop astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson, navigates the thorny landscape of a debate that often casts GMOs as a scapegoat for myriad perceived ills of modern agriculture.
“People, usually of intellectual and financial privilege, who care about the planet and about food, in looking for good decisions, have oversimplified the conversation and left out a lot of nuance” on the discussion around GE foods, [said] Kennedy. That lack of nuance in a sometimes vicious discussion has led to a fear-laden, largely negative public opinion with far-reaching repercussions.
Consider Banana Xanthomonas Wilt (BXW). A bacterial disease, BXW affects all banana cultivars and is considered one of the greatest threats to banana productivity and food security in Uganda and eastern Africa, where the fruit is a staple crop. There are banana plants engineered with a pepper gene that show strong resistance to banana wilt, but they languish behind a guarded fence, prohibited from reaching farmers. “I have grief on my heart,” says Francis Nanzin, Ugandan subsistence farmer, in this clip exclusive to Forbes:
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