1:45 min Read
"Yuuuck! I hate fruits and vegetables. Can't we have mac 'n' cheese instead?"
If you're a parent, there's a good chance you've had to field some variation of that question over and over at your dinner table. But—as far-fetched as it may sound—those days could soon be numbered.
We're not far off from tasty foods and nutritious foods never being at odds with one another. Many children will likely be clamoring for juicy berries and delicious veggies instead of junk food and unhealthy sugars and fats.
The credit for this goes to breakthroughs in plant breeding. Scientists right now are using tools, like gene editing, that could pave the way for a whole lot more varieties of food that are both irresistible to our ravenously hungry offspring and loaded with vitamins and nutrients that enhance their all-around health.
Even the United Nations is joining the action with a whole series of initiatives for its 2021 International Year of Fruit and Vegetables.
We're on the verge of a food revolution that could change the way we all eat.
Plant scientists are unlocking the codes of plant genetics. Courtesy of a technology known as CRISPR, they can now rearrange and splice specific genetic sequences in a plant's cells to unlock flavors, textures, and nutrients that expand nature's bounty.
Super Delicious Super Nutritious
Scientists are using tools like gene editing that could pave the way for a whole lot more varieties of food that are both irresistible and loaded with vitamins and nutrients that enhance all-around health. Perfect for picky kids.
Take berries. There are countless varieties in existing genetic "maps." But in the rough and tumble of traditional agriculture, very few—mainly cranberries, strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries—make it into our grocery stores.
The rest? Well, they may have enticing flavors here and there. But they may also be spiny, spoil easily, or subject to pests and blights. Far too often, unfortunately, nature's bounty ends up rotting in forgotten fields, pantries, and refrigerators.
Scientists have set out to bring these "discards" back into our diets as sought-after superfoods.
Currently, dozens of startups—like PlanteDit, Lifeasible, and Pairwise—are using this cutting-edge breeding method to improve strains of crops that boost flavor profiles, limit allergy triggers, and curb nutritional deficiencies.
Just think of what that could mean for the health of our families. Kids choosing snackable greens over a candy bar, or a nutritious fruit juice over a can of soda. Rushing to dinner, instead of rushing through it for dessert.
Thanks to promising developments in gene editing, eating healthy may never seem like a chore again.