Articles

The Miracle Crop

So after talking with the researchers at SoyMeds for the North Carolina Science Now story Just a Spoonful of Soybeans, I started to wonder just what soybeans are used for and why so many people call soybeans “The Miracle Crop.”

But first, a little history.

As far as anyone can tell, the first soybeans were planted by a colonist/farmer near Savannah around 1760. By 1770, Benjamin Franklin records sending soybean seeds to a botanist, John Bartram, to test in his garden in Philadelphia.

New Fields For Food

Mary-Dell Chilton's DNA discoveries launched the field of genetically modifying plants to ward off pests, use less water, and improve yields. Supporters say it could help feed the world. Opponents say it's not safe, threatening the environment and people in ways that may not be known yet. By discovering the mechanism of DNA transfer, Chilton bestowed that power to humans.

At Home in a Lab

Seventy-four-years-old and retired? No way.

I’ve interviewed a lot of important people in 30 years of television news. Yep, I look at the number as I’m typing and double check to make sure it’s not a typo. It isn’t.

The list includes former Presidents, Governors, astronauts and athletes. But in all those interviews, I’ve never talked with someone who had a building named in their honor. 

Until now.

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