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  • Condensed by Lynda Kiernan-Stone, Unconventional Ag Media

Rabobank: CRISPR Crops Adoption to Surge

A new report authored by Chia-Kai-Kang, farm inputs analyst, and Stephen Nicholson, global strategist, Grains & Oilseeds with Rabobank, outlined how the adoption of gene-edited (CRISPR) crop seeds is expected to increase by more than 50 percent in the next five to 10 years.

Unlike genetically modified seeds, genetic editing or CRISPR, is a relatively new technology that involves only editing the existing gene in the plant, as opposed to adding genetic material to an organism. This allows for a reset of public policy on how to implement this technology in the food sector.

As with GMOs over the past 40 years, the U.S. is the frontrunner in gene-editing applications, with 169 applications for GE products for human consumption, feed, industrial uses, and microorganisms for industrial use being submitted in the country between 2011-2020, according to the USDA.

The genomes of rice, corn, and soybeans have been mapped since the first decade of the 21st century, however, wheat’s genome, which contains more than five times the DNA letters than humans, wasn’t fully mapped until 2018. But with that accomplishment, scientists are beginning to engineer wheat varieties better suited to fight disease, pests, and climatic conditions while producing better quality flour with superior nutritional profiles.


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