As most of my closest family and friends can vouch, I’m slightly obsessed with the British royal family. Okay, I’m slightly obsessed with Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge and the rest of the royal family are a collateral interest (except maybe Prince George and Princess Charlotte….they generate their own level of cuteness obsession).
But it has always bothered me that the Charles, the Prince of Wales, is so staunchly against genetic modification, and even has his own organic food company.
However, as my younger brothers will attest (if they know what’s good for them…), sisters usually know best.
Princess Anne, the queen’s eldest daughter and Prince Charles’ younger sister, recently endorsed the technology as an important part of the future of farming. The princess farms at Gatcombe Park, her country home, and added that she would definitely grow biotech crops on her farm if the laws change after Brexit.
“If we are going to be better at producing food of the right value then we have to accept that genetic technology, whether you call it modification or anything, is going to be part of that,” Princess Anne told BBC. She even thought genetic modification for animals would be desirable, because it could make her rare breed livestock “a little more robust.”
It sounds like Princess Anne kind of gets it. Despite having a privileged lifestyle her entire life, she understands that quality food needs to be affordable. Biotechnology is a tool that allows us to do that in an environmentally-friendly manner. I suppose Prince Charles’ idealized experiences mean he doesn’t understand that, or the realities of food demands and farming.
Hopefully, Princess Anne can knock some sense into her brother, though I’m not holding my breath. At the very least, I hope she can be a positive influence on the younger royals.