It’s been a while since we checked in with Seattle Times coffee columnist Melissa Allison, but we’re happy to link today to her recent article and the strange history and spooky future of genetically modified coffee products. Frankensteined coffee crops! Beans intentionally kept from maturity, like some sort of Caturra castrato! Ripening chemical sprays! Eww.
The Food & Drug Administration considers this week whether to allow the production of genetically modified salmon, which if it is allowed would not be labeled as such. It would be the first genetically altered animal allowed as food in the U.S.
Engineered crops have been permitted — and not labeled — for years, including genetically modified coffee.
In 1999, the University of Hawaii was granted a U.S. patent on coffee that’s genetically altered to stop growing just short of maturity so that berries are at the same stage when they are picked, The Independent in London reported. The coffee is then ripened by a chemical spray.