By Andrew Pollack
For the first time in its 27-year history, a prestigious award for enhancing the global food supply has gone to a creator of genetically modified crops, a top scientist at Monsanto. The choice is likely to add more heat to an intense debate about the role biotechnology can play in combating world hunger.
Robert T. Fraley, Monsanto’s executive vice president and chief technology officer, will share the $250,000 World Food Prize with two other scientists who helped devise how to insert foreign genes into plants: Marc Van Montagu of Belgium and Mary-Dell Chilton of the United States.
The announcement was made in Washington on Wednesday, accompanied by a speech from Secretary of State John Kerry.