On the list of misunderstood technology, genetically modified organisms might take the top spot. Crops with manipulated genetic codes to offset diseases and otherwise better ensure success have long been the victim of misunderstanding and conspiracy. Now, as reported by the Washington Post, more than 100 Nobel laureates have written an open letter asking the environmental group Greenpeace to end their opposition to GMOs.
The scientists made a specific plea for Greenpeace to support Golden Rice, a Vitamin A enriched form of genetically modified rice that could potentially solve malnourishment problems in much of the developing world. They argue that Greenpeace’s repeated attempts to discourage the adoption of Golden Rice harms those suffering from Vitamin A deficiency worldwide.
Greenpeace has historically opposed GMOs on the grounds that their impact on non-modified habitats and farms is unknown and potentially dangerous. On Thursday, Greenpeace offered a formal response to the letter, written by Wilhelmina Pelegrina of the organization’s Southeast Asia office. The response argues that the benefits of Golden Rice have been exaggerated and that diverse diets are the best way to solve malnourishment in Asia and throughout the developing world.