Viewpoint: International science communicator warns crop biotech proponents not to oversell its benefits to wary consumers

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We all agree any mention of “genes” and related techniques, tools and applications evoke strong emotions and varied opinions. This is what has characterized the GMO debate over the last two decades. With rapid advancements witnessed in genetics and modern biotechnology, what lessons can inform how we communicate and engage stakeholders more effectively moving forward? Well, they say experience is the mother of wisdom and history, like love, is so apt to surround her heroes with an atmosphere of imaginary brightness. Indeed, history has a way of turning imaginations into reality if lessons inform practice ….

Claiming that GMOs will feed the world and are a silver bullet to ending hunger and poverty is an overstatement …. Over-claiming the benefits of GMOs placed too much expectations on the technology and serious misconceptions that other tools will not be necessary.

Related article:  Brazil plan to breed gene-edited dairy cattle on hold after bacterial DNA found in animal's genome

In an effort to get their space, many stakeholders fought back and created a polarised debate of so called proponents and opponents. Managing expectations is key to …. building conviction around an all-inclusive strategy for agricultural improvement.

Read full, original article: COMMUNICATING THE SCIENCE OF GENE MODIFICATION: LESSONS FROM LAST TWO DECADES

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