The Gilded Age for Golden Rice?

Bangladesh is poised to become the first country to plant a controversial “golden rice.”

It may sound magical—but it’s science. Golden rice was developed in the 90s to combat vitamin A deficiency—a common cause of blindness and increased risk for death from infectious disease—in countries where deficiency is common and rice is a diet staple.

Yet controversy surrounds the crop, stalling approval processes.

Researchers call golden rice a revolution in transgenic crops and a public good. In Bangladesh, some 21% of children need more vitamin A.

Some NGOs want such crops banned. Others wonder why people can’t just eat more vitamin A-rich vegetables.


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