Thursday, February 21, 2013

Food Activists, Scientists Talk GMOs

Food Activists, Scientists Talk GMOs

Quivira Coalition Conference, Dr. Miguel Altieri - Plants, 2012
11th Quivira Coalition Conference in Albuquerque, NM was focused on How to Feed Nine Billion People From the Ground Up: Soil, Seeds, Water, Plants, Livestock, Forests, Organics, and People.

Imagine sitting UC Berkeley Professor Miguel Altieri—one of the nation’s most outspoken advocates of sustainable farming—down at the table with a representative from Monsanto, the world's biggest producer of genetically modified seeds, for a debate about GMOs. What would happen? Cat fight? Chair throwing?

A group of UC Santa Cruz students and staff will soon find out, as they’re doing just that this Saturday. Incredibly, their goal is hope is not that a spontaneous episode of Jerry Springer breaks out. In fact, quite the opposite.

“We are looking to uplift both perspectives, and evolve in the conversation together”, says UCSC staff member and conference organizer Tim Galarneau.

The conversation is a part of the sixth annual Strengthening the Roots “justice summit” at UCSC. The conference, which brings together students, activists, farmers and community members to discuss the issues facing our food and seed systems, will host the panel “Seeding Sustainability: Hunger, Biotech and the Future of Food Systems,” featuring perspectives from both sides of the GMO debate.

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