This Friedman Seminar features Tim Griffin, associate professor, Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, presenting “Genetically-Engineered Crops: Where we have been and where we might be going”
Tim Griffin is an Associate Professor at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, Tufts University. At Friedman, he has directed the interdisciplinary graduate program, Agriculture, Food and the Environment since 2009, and teaches classes on U.S. agriculture, and agricultural science and policy. His current research focuses on regional food system and climate change impacts on agriculture, and he supervises doctoral students conducting research on topics ranging from precision agriculture to food access. Dr. Griffin served on the National Academy of Sciences study committee that published Genetically Engineered Crops: Experiences and Prospects. He also served as an Advisor to the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee, focusing on Sustainability. Before coming to the Friedman School in 2008, he was Research Agronomist and Lead Scientist with the USDA-Agriculture Research Service in Orono, ME, from 2000 to 2008. From 1992 to 2000, he was the Extension Sustainable Agriculture Specialist at the University of Maine, the first such position in the U.S.
Genetically-engineered crops (“GE crops”) have been used by farmers for just two decades. In the short span since the mid-1990s, GE crops have been rapidly adopted by farmers producing a short list of crops in some countries, and are banned outright in others. There have been myriad claims regarding GE crops, from feeding the world to ecosystem disruption to human health impacts. This stimulated the National Academy of Sciences, in 2014, to undertake a very broad assessment of purported benefits and risks of GE crops that are already being used by farmers around the world. The report from this effort was released in May, 2016, and also assessed potential uses of GE techniques in the future and suggested changes in the regulatory framework for these products. The past and current uses and impacts of GE crops, along with prospects for the future, will all be addressed in this seminar.