Margaret Mellon is a science policy consultant in the areas of antibiotics, genetic engineering and sustainable agriculture. She holds a doctorate in molecular biology and a law degree from the University of Virginia. In 1993, Mellon founded the Food and Environment Program at the Union of Concerned Scientists to promote the adoption of science-based farming systems that are simultaneously productive, environmentally benign, and resilient in the face of stress. The program critically evaluated products of genetic engineering for their contribution to sustainable agriculture and urged the reduction of unnecessary antibiotic use in animal agriculture. After almost 20 years, Mellon stepped down as head of the program in 2012 and, after two additional years as a senior scientist, left UCS in 2014. Mellon has published widely on the potential environmental impacts of biotechnology applications, and served three terms on the U.S. Department of Agricultures Advisory Committee on Biotechnology and 21st Century Agriculture.
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Although we have many problems associated with our food system, they are not going to be solved by biotechnology.
Panelists address issues of regulation and labeling, the ethics of patenting live organisms, potentially positive applications of genetic engineering, and the appropriate role of the biotechnology industry in the food supply.
Genetic engineering is not a fundamental solution to food and agricultural problems.
In response to criticism of several UCS reports, Mellon details their findings and continued importance.
The phrase conflates the important issues of food production and hunger alleviation.
Simplot potatoes are produced through a new kind of GEgene silencing. Simplots version of gene silencing, called Innate technology, adds genetic fragments derived from cultivated and wild potatoes, but no genetic material from unrelated organisms.