Tuesday, June 15, 2004

My UN mole writes to alert us of the latest FAO biotech email forum: Biotechnology applications in food processing: Can developing countries benefit? I have to admit, the answer seems so transparently to be "no," or at least, not much, and why don't you do something useful like help us irrigate instead, that I hadn't given it much thought, but it will be interesting to see if they can come up with anything persuasive. The excellent backgrounder gets right to the the heart of the development/sustainability dialectic:
Traditional fermentation processes employed in most developing countries are low input, appropriate food processing technologies with minimal investment requirements. They make use of locally produced raw materials and are an integral part of village life. These processes are, however, often uncontrolled, unhygienic and inefficient and generally result in products of variable quality and short shelf lives. Fermented foods, nevertheless, find wide consumer acceptance in developing countries and contribute substantially to food security and nutrition.
Do we really want to visit HACCP on the rest of the world?

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