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Posted on Mar 12, 2018 in Audio, Editorial, Featured, Your Texas Agriculture Minute




Did Russia meddle in U.S. biotech debate?

By Gene Hall

There are lots of headlines these days about Russia trying to influence Americans. Recently, Iowa State University has been investigating Russian efforts to feed clickbait into the debate over biotechnology or GMOs.

The researchers found more articles mentioning GMOs in the U.S. versions of Russian-backed sites RT and Sputnik than five American news organizations, including Fox News and CNN combined.

Like most online anti-biotech material, there is little truth in the claims, but perhaps some advantage for Russia.

This debate is the most contentious agricultural issue of the last quarter-century. Many in the “anti” camp have vested interests. Modern agriculture does, too, but tends to have science on its side.

Russia is no different. The U.S. is the world leader in biotechnology. Russia could benefit from hamstringing U.S. progress. They may also have concluded that influencing this emotional debate might divide Americans.

The preceding commentary is brought to you by Texas Farm Bureau, the “Voice of Texas Agriculture.” Called “Your Texas Agriculture Minute,” TFB will issue thought-provoking editorials each week—via print and audio—to spark understanding of agriculture in the Lone Star State and its impact on each and every Texan.

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