come and get it!
And the gettin' was good!
Daily Mail UK:
The first GM food crop containing human genes is set to be approved for commercial production.
The laboratory-created rice produces some of the human proteins found in breast milk and saliva.
Its U.S. developers say they could be used to treat children with diarrhoea, a major killer in the Third World.
The rice is a major step in so-called Frankenstein Foods, the first mingling of human-origin genes and those from plants. But the U.S. Department of Agriculture has already signalled it plans to allow commercial cultivation.
The rice's producers, California-based Ventria Bioscience, have been given preliminary approval to grow it on more than 3,000 acres in Kansas. The company plans to harvest the proteins and use them in drinks, desserts, yoghurts and muesli bars.
The news provoked horror among GM critics and consumer groups on both sides of the Atlantic.
GeneWatch UK, which monitors new GM foods, described it as "very disturbing". Researcher Becky Price warned: "There are huge, huge health risks and people should rightly be concerned about this."
Friends of the Earth campaigner Clare Oxborrow said: "Using food crops and fields as glorified drug factories is a very worrying development.
In the U.S., the Union of Concerned Scientists, a policy advocacy group, warned: "It is unwise to produce drugs in plants outdoors.
"There would be little control over the doses people might get exposed to, and some might be allergic to the proteins."
The American Consumers Union and the Washington-based Centre for Food Safety also oppose Ventria's plans.
As well as the contamination fears there are serious ethical concerns about such a fundamental interference with the building blocks of life.
What it all boils down to for us Yanks is, how will we know?
And this whole Third World thing's just a fig leaf. If the Global North was so concerned about the quality of life of little kids in Africa or Southeast Asia, there's crapton of ways to fix said (starting with this) that have little to do with cooking up some new strain of rice.
UPDATE, 03.08.07: Activate here.