Scientists in Japan have genetically engineered coffee plants to produce 70% less caffeine.
Shinjiro Ogita and colleagues at the Nara Institute of Science and Technology in Japan used a tool called RNA interference to genetically engineer the one-year-old plants.
“At present, coffee is decaffeinated industrially, but the process is expensive and the flavour of the product is poor � problems that could potentially be overcome by the genetic engineering of coffee plants,” the researchers wrote in Thursday’s issue of the journal Nature.
Meanwhile, last year Hawaii’s Kona Coffee Council banned the introduction of genetically modified coffee plants, and signed into law a requirement that Hawaii-labeled coffee states how much Hawaii-grown coffee is used in packaged blends. A good move to keep unscrupulous coffee marketeers in check.
Personally, I like my coffee black and with lots of caffeine.