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What is gene-edited food and is it safe to eat?

What is gene-edited food and is it safe to eat?

Science
BBC NewsBy Pallab GhoshScience correspondentThe law has changed to allow gene-edited food to be developed and sold in England.The government hopes the technology will boost jobs and improve food production, but safety and environmental worries mean it is not allowed in other parts of the UK.What is gene-edited food?For many years, farmers produced new varieties through traditional cross-breeding techniques. They might, for instance, combine a big but not very tasty cabbage with a small but delicious one to create the perfect vegetable.But this process can take years, because getting the hundreds of thousands of genes in cabbages to mix in just the right way to produce large but tasty offspring is a matter of trial and error. Genetic methods remove the random element. They let scientists id...
Commercial development of gene-edited food now legal in England

Commercial development of gene-edited food now legal in England

Science
BBC NewsBy Pallab GhoshScience correspondentGene-edited food can now be developed commercially in England following a change in the law. Supporters of the technology say it will speed up the development of hardier crops that will be needed because of climate change.Critics say that the change could bring ''disaster'' to our food production and the environment.Gene editing involves making precise changes to an organism's DNA to enhance certain characteristics.What is gene-edited food and is it safe to eat?The new law also opens the door to the development of gene-edited farm animals, but a further vote by MPs will be required before it is allowed, again only in England. The Scottish, Welsh and Northern Irish governments have not permitted the commercial use of gene editing.BBC NewsGene edit...
Rocks at the bottom of the deep ocean provide marine food chains with vital nutrients

Rocks at the bottom of the deep ocean provide marine food chains with vital nutrients

Science
March 27 (UPI) -- Marine food chains are fueled by nutrients from decaying rocks located thousands of feet below the surface of the ocean. According to a new study, published this week in the journal PNAS, phytoplankton and marine algae, which form the bases of aquatic food webs, rely on nitrogen released from sediments on the floor of the deep ocean. Advertisement Previously, scientists have argued oxygen in the deep ocean prevents dissolved iron from escaping eroded seabed rocks. The latest findings suggest the opposite is true -- oxygen and organic matter in the deep ocean may actually aid the release of nitrogen from marine sediments. "Our findings reveal that the shallow surface of the deep seafloor provides an important source of iron -- a scarce micronutrient -- for the ocean," le...

Amazon-backed food delivery firm Deliveroo picks London for its blockbuster debut

Finance
A Deliveroo courier rides along Regent Street delivering takeaway food in central London during Covid-19 Tier 4 restrictions.Pietro Recchia | SOPA Images | LightRocket via Getty ImagesLONDON — British food delivery start-up Deliveroo announced Thursday that it plans to list in London, in a post-Brexit boost for the City.The firm, which is backed by Amazon, is expected to go public later this year. It went from near failure in 2020 amid a competition review into Amazon's minority investment, to operating profitability toward the end of the year thanks to the coronavirus lockdown-driven surge in demand for online takeout services. Amazon's stake in Deliveroo was greenlit by the regulator last summer.Deliveroo said it would adopt a dual-class share structure for its market debut, giving its f...
Climate change threatens food chains, top predators

Climate change threatens food chains, top predators

Science
March 1 (UPI) -- As the planet continues to get hotter, new research suggests food chains will become less efficient, funneling less and less energy from the bottom to the top. For the study, researchers at the University of Exeter and Queen Mary University of London measured the effects of temperature on the movement of energy from single-celled algae, or phytoplankton, to the microscopic organisms -- called zooplankton -- that eat them. Advertisement The findings, published Monday in the journal Nature, showed an increase of 4 degrees Celsius reduced the energy transfer from phytoplankton to zooplankton by 56 percent. "These findings shine a light on an under-appreciated consequence of global warming," study co-author Gabriel Yvon-Durocher said in a press release. "Phytoplankton and zo...