Agricultural biotechnology is a booming sector and the latest research shows that this is about to change.
This article is part of a series by News.co.uk to highlight the emerging science behind the biotechnology industry.
The technology to make meat and dairy products can be produced using genes from pigs, cows and sheep.
This has created a new industry of biotechnology companies who want to turn farmers’ fields into factories where their meat and cheese are produced.
While there are some hurdles in the way of a future plant-based revolution, the technology is on track to become more efficient and more cost-effective in the future.
“There are a lot of areas of concern in terms of the food supply,” says Dr Chris Grieve, head of research at the University of Queensland.
He points to the need for greater research into using the genetic modification of plants to create more resilient crops and crops that can tolerate drought.
However, he says that it is the genetic engineering of crops that could create a more resilient crop.
“We need to look at crop protection strategies that are able to withstand drought, so that we don’t have to rely on a plant to grow in the rain,” he says.
Dr Grieve believes that the ability to produce crops that have higher levels of vitamins and other nutrients could also become a big advantage in the long-term.
A recent study by the Agricultural Research Institute of Australia found that the world was looking at about $40 billion in potential crop biotechnology investments between 2025 and 2030.
If farmers have the genetic modifications needed to develop the bioremediation technology, it would mean that there is a new source of food for billions of people around the world.
But, as Dr Grieve points out, there are other issues to consider when thinking about this technology.
The potential for contamination is high and scientists say that it’s a big risk.
“It’s a risk we need to take very seriously, and we’re doing our best to avoid it,” he said.
As more people adopt plant-to-animal (P2A) farming methods, the number of farmers and farmers affected could grow.
According to the World Bank, there will be an average of 20 million farmers in the world by 2050.
In a country where there is already a large number of people relying on meat, dairy and eggs, there could be a problem if there are more people using P2A farming methods.
And if there is more P2B farming, farmers could be exposed to a range of other risks such as pests, disease and soil erosion.
“If you look at a farm in Australia, for example, we have a lot in Australia that’s currently using P3A farming,” Dr Grie says.
“P3A is a lot more intensive than P2a, P2b, P3c, P4a, so there is the potential for serious problems there.
There are also concerns that P2C is a way to grow crops, so if you are going to be farming in Australia you should consider whether you are getting P2 or P2-1 farming.”
So it’s important that we are very careful about what we are doing and making sure we are using the right technology to do the right thing for the right reasons,” he adds.