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Prettier Produce

July 31, 2018

With the help of gene editing, fruits and vegetables may soon become prettier and more delicious.

Transcript

Creating more attractive varieties of fruits and vegetables could boost consumption. (silviarita/pixabay)

Creating more attractive varieties of fruits and vegetables could boost consumption. (silviarita/pixabay)

BOB HIRSHON (host):

Prettier produce. I’m Bob Hirshon and this is Science Update.

New plant breeding technologies could enhance the color, taste, and shelf life of fruits and vegetables, encouraging people to eat more of them. This according to Richard Epsley and Andrew Allan of Plant & Food Research in New Zealand, writing in the journal Trends in Plant Science. Allan explains that a technique called Crispr-Cas9 allows researchers to edit genes already in the plant so that it produces more colorful fruit. Enhanced color means more vitamins and healthful compounds.

ANDREW ALLAN (Auckland University):

When we enhance the color of a fruit or vegetable, we’re getting an increased health outcome as well; the consumer eats more fruit and vegetables, so it’s really a double win when you change a fruit or vegetable’s color. 

HIRSHON:

He says gene editing has the potential to dramatically speed up the development of tasty new cultivars, changing how we eat. I’m Bob Hirshon, for AAAS, the science society.

 

Story by Susanne Bard