Can the poor eat now?

More noise from Michael Pollan found here (and I have written on here). He suggests that the poor could get a more varied diet and avoid the affects of a vitamin poor diet (such as vitamin A deficiency) by planting “greens in pots around their houses…” That way, we would not need to employ Golden Rice.

Slum shelters built just feet from the train tracks in central Jakarta Indonesia.
Picture taken by Jonathan McIntosh, 2004.

In order to reduce vitamin A deficiency, Michael Pollan suggests “[We should] encourage [the poor] to plant squash or greens in pots around their houses or around the edges of fields.” Because, “Sometimes there’s a really boring way to achieve the same thing.”

Brilliant! Now why didn’t researchers think of that? Perhaps, because:

For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong. – H. L. Mencken

Once again, let’s listen to Dr. Florence Wambugu:

You people in the developed world are certainly free to debate the merits of genetically modified foods, but can we please eat first?”


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