KENNEWICK, Wash.—A University of Idaho researcher says he’s optimistic efforts to develop genetically modified potatoes will resurface.
Joseph Guenthner, a UI professor in Moscow, Idaho, said he believes it’s possible the organic industry or environmental organizations may one day accept GM potatoes developed using traits from other potato plants.
Efforts to develop GM potatoes date back to the 1980s, Guenthner said. Efforts failed due to export market concerns or political pressure by groups like Greenpeace, he said.
“Four decades of scientific and economic activity and we don’t have a commercial GM product on the market now,” he said.
Simplot continues to be involved in developing genetically modified potatoes, Guenthner said.
“It’s not just Simplot who is working on GM potatoes,” Guenthner said. “There are people at universities and other agribusinesses who are developing products I think would be great for producers and consumers.”
SOURCE: Matthew Weaver, Capital Press