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  Agriculture and Food  
 
Number of articles in this category: 56
 
  image image 07/11/02
  image The paradox of progress RTD info Special FP6
    The agri-foodstuffs sector is subject to increasingly stringent regulations, standards, monitoring procedures and quality control. Yet recent years have brought some dramatic failings in the form of BSE, dioxins, listerioris and salmonella. A brief analysis of a crisis of confidence which sometimes runs deep.
 
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  image image 07/11/02
  image From the farm to the fork RTD info Special FP6
    The spotlight on the Union's responsibility at every stage of the agri-foodstuffs chain and future research prospects in this field.
 
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image image 07/11/02
image Communication: a challenge and a duty RTD info Special FP6
  Consumer concerns about food safety and their level of confidence in the information provided on the subject are a major challenge for European politicians and scientists.
 

Transgenic plants:
Breaking the deadlock
02/10/2001

GMOs, and more specifically transgenic plants, have come to symbolise all that is wrong in the relationship between science and society. While their most ardent supporters present them as heralding a brave and wonderful new world, a radical opposition views them as an ecological and health time-bomb irresponsibly exploited by life science multinationals for their own ends. Hardly surprising therefore that a general public caught in the crossfire is growing ever more uncertain of just who to believe.
 

RTD info 31
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Neither scientism nor extremism 02/10/2001

Why is there deadlock in the debate on genetically modified - or GM - plants? No doubt because it is being approached in the wrong way. The tendency is to present it as a single and homogenous issue, when in fact GM plants should be evaluated on a case-by-case basis, in the same way as any technology in which risk management is involved.
 

RTD info 31
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Will clean agriculture be transgenic? 02/10/2001

The strongest resistance to GM plants is based on environmental concerns. Yet it is in this very field that they offer most benefits. Thanks to various promising avenues of research, transgenic plants could champion the cause of 'cleaner' agriculture. This is a major asset when you consider that population growth will require a doubling of the world's cereal production over the next 50 years.
 

RTD info 31
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Harmful or beneficial? 02/10/2001

Although not insignificant, risks to human health linked to the consumption of GM plants (or products based on them) are comparable to those present when any new cultivated plant is introduced. On the other hand, their benefits could prove considerable, even if they are still hypothetical.
 

RTD info 31
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Man and nature 02/10/2001

An inert matter, at man's disposal to manipulate and control at will. This Cartesian vision of nature prevailed until very recently. But we now know that we are part of the earth's ecosystem - and our very existence depends on it. Nature has therefore become inherently 'respectable'. At least this is the view of Bernard Feltz, a science philosopher at Louvain University (UCL).
 

RTD info 31
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Mad cow disease, a source of wisdom? 11-04-2001

Apart from triggering a health scare, the BSE crisis also proved a revelation, by highlighting the tensions in the increasingly complex relations between science and society.
 

RTD info 29
New opportunities for lucerne 30-12-00 

The nutritional and functional benefits of rubisco, a protein found in the forage crop lucerne (also known as alfalfa), are attracting great interest from experts on human diet. Researchers on the EU-funded Fralupro project have now developed an efficient process for extracting rubisco on an industrial scale, which could also be used for other proteins of interest to the pharmaceutical or cosmetics industries.
 

RTD info 28
Genome: European firsts 13-10-00 

At the same time as participating very actively in the international Human Genome Project, Europe has also been developing its expertise in all areas of genomic research into the living world. Over the past decade, European research programmes have supported many projects that have resulted in some spectacular 'firsts' - such as the sequencing of organisms including yeast, the bacteria Bacillus subtilis or the plant Arabidopsis thaliana.
 

RTD info 27
Genome: Public opinion and the life sciences 13-10-00 

How do Europeans view the life sciences and their applications? What are their fears and hopes in the face of the explosion in biotechnologies? What information sources do they trust in this field? For the fourth time since 1991, an opinion poll on biotechnology has been conducted throughout the European Union. It reveals growing scepticism and suspicion.
 

RTD info 27
Genome: The right to information 13-10-00 

Last April, Philippe Busquin, European Commissioner for research, announced the establishment of a Biosciences High-Level Group. The French geneticist Axel Kahn, charged with heading the group, describes the tasks now facing this 'team' of 11 eminent scientists. He also speaks about his personal feelings on some of the current major debates sparked by advances in our knowledge of the living organism.
 

RTD info 27
Improving maize to aid the South 13-10-00 

Maize is a vital crop in Latin America and Africa. Unfortunately, the acid soils in these regions result in poor harvests. A number of research projects involving laboratories in the European Union and developing countries are now working on selecting plant strains to overcome this handicap.
 

RTD info 27
Keeping fisheries and marine species afloat 13-10-00 

African, South American and Caribbean experts are working together on an extensive European endeavour to promote the Ecopath model: a key tool for understanding the interactions between species and the responsible management of marine ecosystems.
 

RTD info 27
Sustainable replanting of tropical forests 13-10-00 

To restore the forests of Southeast Asia's archipelagos, with their valuable tropical oils, Malaysian and Filipino researchers are developing advanced forest-care techniques in partnership with French, British and Finnish teams.
 

RTD info 27
Europe's fragile forests 19-06-00 

The environmental and economic disaster wreaked by last December's storms has raised questions about forest management practices. For some years now, researchers with the Storms project have been studying the damage to Europe's forests caused by wind, snow and fire. The team has developed assessment tools to be used by the experts in appraising silvicultural techniques and minimising risks.
 

RTD info 26
Discerning sensors 24-01-00 

Odour Sensors in the Food Industry - Brite-EuRam - eight partners from four countries (France, Italy, Sweden, the Netherlands). Fregmegs - Brite-EuRam - eight partners from four countries (United Kingdom, Germany, France, Switzerland).
 

RTD info 24
Bakers warm to water controller 15-12-99 

Fuzzy logic software used in water supply temperature controllers, giving improved temperature control.
 

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