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Thursday, March 19, 2015

Genetically Engineered Wine

University of Illinois research has produced genetically engineered yeast that will reduce the toxins that cause hangovers. The researchers say they can increase the health benefits by adding more resveratrol plus figure out how to make it taste better.

A win win wine. It sounds too good to be true!

All through the article on this you'll notice no use of the term GMO. There are actually lots of genetically modified yeasts out there, just not in production yet because people aren't quite ready to accept GMO wine. The first to come to market with little fanfare is called ML01 that made wine making a little easier, in that in combined two steps of fermentation into one. The vast majority of premium wineries don't use this yeast. I don't know how to find out who might as it's unlikely anyone wants to admit to it.

There is also research into lowering the amount of alcohol in wine by modifying the yeast to create less when converting sugar.

So, no hangovers, it's healthy, it tastes better, and won't get you drunk as easily. What's not to like?

Many winemakers use native yeasts, some use only the yeasts that are naturally on the grapes and in the wine production area. What happens when these mingle with the GMO yeasts? What are you going to get?

Genetically modified beer may be on the way, too.

Not much is happening with GMO yeasts yet as there is real consumer fear, unfounded or not.