Green Genes: Quoted in Forbes!

A few weeks ago I talked to Matthew Herper from Forbes Magazine, he was writing a story about Monsanto and was looking for some outside perspectives, and had already talked to Pam Ronald. I ended up talking ad nauseum about the blog and what we hope to do with it. Shortly thereafter, the story went up, called The Planet versus Monsanto, and after reading it, I thought, aw, no plug! It’s a good story, though, and it frames the issue in an interesting fashion:
“Monsanto’s first round of attackers said its seeds were evil. Now the charge is that Monsanto’s seeds are too good.”
Well, I just got word that Herper has another story in Forbes Magazine – apparently his conversations with Pam and I turned into a new story called Green Genes – and I daresay he picked a couple of good quotes from me. Naturally, Pam and Raoul were the stars:

Now Ronald, 49, and Adamchak, 55, have become proselytizers for the marriage of genetically modified foods and organic farming. Their goal: crops that limit the use of pesticides and fertilizers while delivering more food per acre planted. They wrote a book together, Tomorrow’s Table. An opinion piece she wrote for the Boston Globe won a 2009 National Association of Science Writers prize. They give lectures. They are leading a chorus of young scientists and forward thinkers who see genetic modification not as a threat to sustainable farming but as a new way to make it better. They are not fans of corporate agriculture but think genetically modified organisms represent a missed opportunity to make things better.
These true believers come as a flood of new gene crops approaches. The European Union estimates the number of GM traits in crops will quadruple to 120 by 2015. Only half will be made by for-profit companies. Stewart Brand, one of the founders of the back-to-the-land movement, has been arguing fiercely that environmentalists need to drop their anti-GM stance. So has Karl Haro von Mogel, a 27-year-old plant sciences graduate student at the University of Wisconsin at Madison, whose blog promotes the technology. “There’s so much stuff going on that nobody even knows about,” says Von Mogel. “There is this huge potential if we use the science to pursue those things that are possible.”

I think I need to check a magazine rack to make sure this is real…
Too bad it didn’t mention Biofortified by name! I’ve got to make the site look pretty, we may have company.
Wait I thought I was 28?

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Written by Karl Haro von Mogel

Karl Haro von Mogel serves as BFI’s Director of Science and Media and as Co-Executive Editor of the Biofortified Blog. He has a PhD in Plant Breeding and Plant Genetics from UW-Madison with a minor in Life Sciences Communication. He is a Postdoctoral Scholar at UC Riverside and works on Citrus genetics.

11 comments

  1. Forbes appear to be really getting in to the whole GM thing. It’s a shame that the green genes article automatically gets filed in the minds of the masses as more pro-monsanto propaganda from Forbes rather than as something to actually think about (they appear to be taking quite a bashing on the comments section for the recent few monsanto related articles)
    It would be nice to have more dissenting/intersted external parties getting involved in the discussion… particularly as the Monsanto blog has died down a lot of late and keeps shutting down posts just as they get interesting (well just as I post 10,000 word posts hoping for a decent response anyway…) – I swear people wait until the last minute to post anything worth responding to now =(
    Also, never, ever, correct anyone on your age, particularly in print – by the time you’re up into the high numbers you could well shave a good 5 or 6 years off the total if you keep getting good press

  2. Congratulations on a good article! Popular science articles are required to have a few errors in them to be published. Just be happy that the error was benign 😛

  3. When you changed your name, I had a feeling people would treat Haro as a middle name. Imagine when you get your PHD. Then you could be Dr. Von Mogel. Sound like a mad scientist or super villan to me.

  4. Wow, Karl, national press! I am so happy for you.
    Although, it would have been nice if they had mentioned Biofortified! I just did a quick Google, and it does turn out that Biofortified is the first hit for your name, so I hope people stop on by.

  5. And it caught the attention of some local press, too… 🙂
    Hah! I figured out why my age was wrong… I talked to the reporter back in December, before my birthday! No mistake, just entropy slowly winning its war against me.
    No, you haven’t seen scary comments until you’ve gone to one of those non-mainstream sites like OpEd News or on the other end of the spectrum, World Net Daily. They have amazing reality-filter technology. No fact, no matter how small, gets in.

  6. next time I will talk up biofortified to the reporters. I am sending lots of people to biofortified

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