Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Grass

You know, if we're gong to do the whole GMO thing anyway, maybe someone could work on modifying a grass so that it wasn't all indigestible celluose and instead had human-accessible protein and carbs in it. There's really interesting and admirable work going on trying to develop perennial grasses as a productive, resilient, sustainable human food source, which is doubtless preferable...but it has to be focussed on grass seeds, because we can eat the seeds. But what if we could eat the grass itself? We can't become ruminants, but we could become the ecological equivalent by changing the output end of the grass sunlight-conversion machine so it matched our dietary needs and capabilities better.

Hey, and SC? Funnily enough, Manchego is basically my absolute favorite cheese!

3 Comments:

Anonymous ACW said...

So, you do know that as a race we've been to that larder several times already? Most of our cereal grains are domesticated wild grasses.

12:51 PM  
Blogger Spudart said...

eat grass? ha! we'd be like cows.

8:55 PM  
Blogger hh said...

Hey ACW -- (sorry for the long lag in reply time here!) -- sure, I know that. But a) we're eating only the seeds, not the cellulose-intensive grassy part itself, as herbivores do, and b) in domesticating them, we've made them annual, not perennial, crops. What I'm trying to suggest is a genetically-engineered grass blade that is digestible by humans. In such a situation, the grass clippings from lawn mowers would actually be a harvest, rather than compost ingredients.

12:35 AM  

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