Bill Gates Says Every Piece Of Bread He's Ever Eaten Is From 'Genetically-Modified Wheat': Why He's Rooting For GMOs

Zinger Key Points
  • GMOs have polarized people as the adoption of their use continues to grow.
  • Bill Gates has been a proponent of GMOs and see them as means of improving productivity and mitigating malnutrition.
Bill Gates Says Every Piece Of Bread He's Ever Eaten Is From 'Genetically-Modified Wheat': Why He's Rooting For GMOs

Billionaire and philanthropist Bill Gates visited Kenya in November of last year and amid his hectic schedule, he found time to rally support for the controversial use of genetically-modified crops.

What Happened: Genetically-modified organisms, or GMOs, are now widely prevalent, the Microsoft co-founder suggested, online news outlet Tuko reported.

"Every piece of bread I’ve ever eaten is from genetically modified wheat, every piece of corn I’ve eaten is G.M.O corn. These are proven products," he said while speaking at the University of Nairobi on Nov. 17, 2022.

A GMO crop contains DNA that has been altered using genetic engineering to introduce a favorable trait or impart immunity against predators/parasites in order to increase productivity. These are now predominantly found in the food supply chain.

Kenya recently lifted the ban on the cultivation and import of GMO crops and animal feed.

See also: After Bill Gates Dumps Billions In Berkshire To Buy Microsoft, His Quiet Biotech Portfolio Has Made A New Trade

Why It’s Important: Gates has long been a supporter of GMOs and in a 2016 interview with the Wall Street Journal, he argued that genetic modification is done in a way where there is a very thorough safety procedure. Vitamin fortification that can be accomplished by genetic modification can help counter malnutrition in Africa, he had said.

Detractors, including consumers, farmers, NGOs and regulators, argue that widespread use of GMO crops produces herbicide-resistant weeds and pesticide-resistant pests. This in turn will call for the development of even more toxic chemicals to control the weeds and pests.

They also point out threats to small farmers, as GMO crops are mostly patented and are under the control of big corporations with deep pockets.

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Originally published on Nov. 19, 2022.

Photo: Courtesy of Red Maxwell on flickr 

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