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Purple tomatoes, golden rice, blood-sucking lettuce? Join us for an exciting and thought-provoking evening as we discuss what the food of the future could and should grow, look and taste like. Two plant biologists from the John Innes Centre will introduce you to the cutting-edge scientific techniques they are using to meet the challenges of agriculture and the food industry in a rapidly changing world. How will bulking up wheat grains and colouring in tomatoes help to feed a growing population, conserve the environment and improve our quality of life?
Purple Tomato 2.0 - The Revenge
Dr Eugenio Butelli (Research Scientist at the John Innes Centre )
Although we know how important a healthy diet is, few people manage to eat their 5-a-day, and chronic diseases are reaching epidemic proportions in many countries. Anthocyanins are colourful natural pigments found in fruit and vegetables such as blueberries, and scientists think that they can protect against illnesses such as cardiovascular disease and some cancers. Using these pigments, we've developed an innovative method to increase how many anthocyanins are produced in tomatoes which could be of great benefit to consumers.
Building Bigger Grains Of Wheat
Jemima Brinton (PhD Student at the John Innes Centre)
With the world population predicted to exceed 9 billion by 2050, crop yields must increase. Wheat is one of the world’s most important crops, providing 20% of the calories consumed by humans. In fact, each one of us eats 50 wheat plants a day! Grain size is an important building block of final yield. Identifying and understanding the factors which control grain size could provide ways to increase wheat yields for the future.