Readers' Blog: GMO tobacco not needed

Recent reports have detailed how scientists have used genetic engineering to improve photosynthesis in tobacco so that it grows 40% ‘better’, something that they should be ashamed of.

There is a need for improved food production and selective breeding has produced the corn we have. Some genetically modified foods have been created, although they are not always welcomed.

The improvement in tobacco production is not one that we need.

Even if it is only in a controlled environment there will be a demand for these plants at a time when we should be decreasing production.

There are a number of other plants in the Solanaceae family including potatoes and tomatoes that would be far better options.

Scientists could work on developing a tomato variety for supermarkets that has the properties they want of firmness and size but doesn’t taste like cardboard.

Yes, we should look at developing better varieties naturally, but also concentrate on improved production quantities and better transport and storage methods.

Tell the scientists to put the improved tobacco in their pipe and smoke it, except that this is very dangerous to their health.

- Dennis Fitzgerald

Box Hill, Vic



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