Genetically engineered chocolate
One of the biggest threats to the chocolate industry is the increased level of Theobroma cacao plants that are becoming infected by disease. Around one-fifth of cacao pods are ravaged by disease before they can be harvested. Researchers at Pennsylvania State University believe genetic engineering with the CRISPR-CAS9 technique could provide a solution.
This would work by removing the genetic sequence in the plant’s DNA that suppresses its ability to fight infection. After artificially infecting engineered leaves, the plants appeared to be more successful in fighting disease, however, the team will still need to wait for the entire tree to grow and test its fruit before they will know if the process has worked.
Cacao pods are being ravaged by disease worldwide