Snacking on Cotton

Image credit: 

At first when I read the headlines on edible cotton, I was dreaming of bale-fuls of cotton candy, but apparently, the breakthrough isn't that advanced. Instead, the edible here actually refers to the cotton seeds, which are normally high in protein (more than 30%), but also toxic to human systems. Amazingly, scientists at Texas A&M have managed to use a new gene-silencing technique to eliminate the toxins. Currently, for every pound of cotton fiber reaped, farmers end up with 1.6 pounds of seeds; and until now those seeds have just been scattered to cows. The value here is that farmers in poor countries will now be able to utilize that protein-rich food, whether it's for their own sustenance or for additional funds. Read more at the Tech Review.

More from mental_floss...

November 22, 2006 - 8:51am
webby
submit to reddit