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Life sciences/Plant sciences/Plant genetics

Foods containing ingredients from genetically modified (GM) crops pose no greater risk than the same foods made from crops modified by conventional plant breeding techniques, the AAAS Board of Directors has concluded. Legally mandating labels on GM foods could therefore “mislead and falsely alarm consumers,” the Board said in a statement approved 20 October.

Jason Silverstein, an anthropologist in training at Harvard, was looking for feedback on his research into the role of physicians as border police in French refugee asylum policy. Under the policy, medical evaluation is a key element of the asylum process—if refugees can prove they suffered trauma, they can stay. If not, they must leave.

Successful farming has long depended upon the right mixture of plants, seeds, soil, water, weather, and luck. Facing a future of growing population and diminishing resources, the prospect of sustainable agriculture and secure food supplies will require the added ingredients of compromise and cooperation, according to international agricultural specialists.