Australian scientists have created bananas rich in pro-vitamin A to aid to specifically save the lives of children who die from vitamin A deficiency every year in Africa.
The golden orange-fleshed bananas were manufactured with the genes of a rare Papa New Guinea banana species-high in provitamin A-and combined with the high generating Cavendish banana. The purpose of the creation was for provitamin A so that when consumed, the body would convert it into vitamin A.
Thanks to funding of over seven-million dollars from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, over the last decade, Queensland University Researchers have been able to develop the “biofortified” bananas.
The group of researchers presented a proof of concept in a field trial in Australia, where it was proven that their bananas actually contained double the amount of provitamin A than expected.
The lead researcher stated that the success of their fruit genetic variation has been inserted into the Ugandan banana field supply to provide a nutritional diet for the area’s malnourished communities. Adding onto that, the next stage will be to observe if the results are duplicated, as cooked bananas are a staple food in the rural parts of the country.
Provitamin A-rich bananas are expected to support an estimate of 750,000 children, who die yearly from not meeting a dietary requirement of vitamin A with hundreds of thousands going blind from birth through the age of five around the world.
From 2006 to 2011, Uganda has had a twenty percent soar in introducing Vitamin A into the population. The lead researcher noted how the country’s native bananas have been an excellent source of starch, but has been low in micronutrients. particularly pro-vitamin A and iron.
Results remain to be seen in how science inserting lab experiments, such as these golden-orange bananas, into the African ecosystem for the African population will conclude. Many theorize that this is Africa once again being used as a guinea pig for something more diabolical – possibly an outbreak of disease years down the line.
In case you’re not aware, take note that the everyday bananas we eat are genetically modified for taste and population abundance, as bananas prior to modification decades ago were filled with seeds and basically inedible before science turned it into the fruit we know it as. Many of our plants have been altered for selective breeding-done with non-malicious intent (that we know of), so there is a reason to be optimistic. If this superfood can indeed eliminate hunger and malnutrition in one part of the world, then more power to it.
However, if this is a potential planting-figuratively and literally- of another HIV/AIDS or Ebola epidemic that will infect the African population down the line, the food experiments that were taking place in the Ugandan food supply around the year 2017 should be referenced. Let’s all hope the latter doesn’t occur and that man is indeed trying to help man without any devious motives, but because of the history of Africa with outside interference, there is always a reason for speculating motives.