How biotech is helping the world salvage food

September 29, 2020
It’s a busy month in biotech-related “holidays.” Today is the inaugural International Day of Awareness of Food Loss and Waste, AND World Heart Day. We explain why both matter during the COVID-19 pandemic in around 700 words, 3 and a half minutes.
BIO

It’s a busy month in biotech-related “holidays.” Today is the inaugural International Day of Awareness of Food Loss and Waste, AND World Heart Day. We explain why both matter during the COVID-19 pandemic in around 700 words, 3 and a half minutes.

 

How biotech is helping the world salvage food

International Day of Awareness of Food Loss and Waste
 
Image: UN FAO
 

Today (September 29) is the inaugural International Day of Awareness of Food Loss and Waste, organized by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the UN as a call to action for the public and private sectors to make food loss and waste and food security—especially for the most vulnerable—a priority. Here’s how biotech can help. 

“This past year laid bare the many cracks in our global food system,” explains BIO’s Cornelia Poku in a new blog post, as people were going hungry while food went to waste.

What’s biotech got to do with it? Biotechnology is delivering powerful tools to help reduce food loss and waste at all points along the food production and supply chain. 

To help farmers deal with climate change causing unpredictable weather and more pests and disease, genetic modification is making crops resistant and resilient to these factors, which can improve crop yields and reduce greenhouse gasses, Cornelia explains.

Biotech is also helping to reduce food waste by consumers. Okanagen has developed the Arctic Apple, which doesn’t brown when bitten, sliced, or bruised, making it “easy to tell when an apple is actually spoiled and not just reacting to oxygen.” Similarly, Simplot has developed a potato that is less likely to brown, which “could make a dent in the nearly 1.4 billion pounds of potatoes that are wasted annually.”

We have the technology to combat food loss and waste—now, we need policy. Policy and public opinion must catch up with the science and help bring these safe, nutritious foods to the market. Learn more about food and farm innovation.  

So, think twice before tossing that produce in the back of your fridge—and discover other ways you can take action on food loss and waste at Think.Save.Eat.

 
 
 
Twitter
 
LinkedIn
 
Facebook
 

World Heart Day in a pandemic

World Heart Day
 
 

Today is World Heart Day, too—a good time to look waaaay back to February when we released analysis on heart health and investment. 

Cardiovascular disease is the world’s number one killer, causing 17.9 million deaths per year around the globe, according to the World Heart Federation.

And as COVID-19 deaths top 1 million worldwide, it’s important to think about heart health, too—because patients with cardiovascular disease and hypertension are at greater risk of serious complications and death from the coronavirus.  

We need more research and investment in cardiovascular therapies, as we explained in The State of Investment and Innovation in Hypertension and Heart Failure, BIO’s Industry Analysis report released earlier this year.

The clinical pipeline for cardiovascular therapies has grown just 3% over four years—a small fraction compared to the immunology and cancer pipelines. 

Hypertension in particular needs investment. Only one new drug class has been approved for hypertension in 20 years, but patients with hypertension are more susceptible to severe cases of COVID-19.

This is yet another reason why government price setting will harm innovation and patients. Now is the time to stimulate investment in therapies for COVID-19 and cardiovascular disease (and many others), but Trump's drug pricing executive order would stall it.    

Learn more about why heart health matters in a pandemic.

Read BIO's Industry Analysis reports.

 
 
 
Twitter
 
LinkedIn
 
Facebook
 
GOTV: 35 days to go. Visit www.bio.org/vote to make your voting plan.
BIO Beltway Report
GoodDayBIO
 
 

President Trump’s Tuesday: He will debate former VP Joe Biden tonight at 9 PM ET live from Cleveland, OH.

What’s Happening on Capitol Hill: With 48 hours until a government shutdown, the Senate is expected to pass the House stop-gap funding deal, according to POLITICO. Here are a few hearings we’re watching this week:

September 30, 2020 at 10:00 AM ET | House Oversight & Reform Committee: Unsustainable Drug Prices: Testimony from the CEOs (Part I and Part II)

September 30, 2020 at 11:30 AM ET | House Energy & Commerce Oversight & Investigations Subcommittee: Pathway to a Vaccine: Ensuring a Safe and Effective Vaccine People Will Trust

October 2, 2020 at 9:00 AM ET | House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis: Hybrid Hearing with Secretary Of Health & Human Services Alex Azar

 
 
Paragraph (normal) - Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Quis ipsum suspendisse ultrices gravida. Risus commodo viverra maecenas accumsan lacus sample link.
 
Twitter
 
LinkedIn
 
Facebook