Monday, September 27, 2010

Chocolate Is Dying ?????????

Under the spreading chestnut tree the village smithy stands.....No More. Not since a blight erased the chestnut tree from the American scene. Now with global warming and climate shift most North American conifers are dying of A,B, or C causes.

Please dear God not the Chocolate Trees!!!!

"In a rare tale of technology, bio­terrorism and chocolate, scientists are racing to sequence the cacao tree genome. They fear that without the genome in hand they will be unable to stop the spread of two virulent pathogens that threaten to devastate the world’s cocoa crop."

"In a strange twist, the quest for the cacao tree genome became a race between two companies that typically compete in the candy aisle of your local drug store, Mars and Hershey. According to a New York Times report, the Hershey-led research project has also finished a rough draft of the genome, but can’t discuss its work until a journal article is published.
The genetic data will be precious to those who cultivate and rely on the cacao tree, researchers say.
Despite its seeming ubiquity on newsstands, chocolate is reliant on a notoriously fragile crop that has been plagued by pests and disease. In the 1980s, Brazil was a top cocoa exporter. Then a fungus known as witches’ broom infected cacao trees and decimated the industry. [Time]
After that crash in the South American cacao market, production shifted to Africa.
Today, about 70 percent of the world crop is grown in West Africa, and several million small farmers depend on it for their livelihoods. "

According to the Candy companies the glass is half full. The Geneticist are saying the glass is half empty. WHATEVER!



BB-Idaho said...

Never thought about cacao trees having a genome..wonder if there is a Hershey allele? Maybe it will kick start some technology..way back it was the tobacco mosaic..then virus..then the science of virology.
Now, thanks to our meddling, common bacteria are picking up a handy enzyme chain which makes them immune to antibiotics.
Hard to get ahead of Ma Nature....

drlobojo said...

After I posted this I began to consider what Mars/Hershey could do with this research. How about a soybean/cacao plant that allows chocolate to farmed almost anywhere and in greater volume.

BB-Idaho said...

We can only hope they find that the cacao hasn't been
pollinated by the acacia..we humans are
bad enough