Is it possible to genetically modify cannabis? Absolutely, says Hermann. But does that mean Monsanto (the widely-recognized king of GMO corporations) is cooking up some GMO weed, as thousands of writers and bloggers have speculated online? “No,” says Sara Miller, of Monsanto Public Affairs. “Monsanto is not conducting research in this area and I am not aware of any legitimate research in this area under development by other seed companies. Any rumored involvement by seed companies is ‘urban legend.’ ”
Meanwhile, the industrial hemp industry has gone as far as placing a moratorium on genetically modifying hemp. “It’s a responsibility of the trade associations and their members” to keep genetic modification from happening, says Hermann.
At this time, though, there is no moratorium on genetic modification in the cannabis or medical marijuana industry. Which isn’t to say that it’s happening with any frequency. “I think we’re far from [genetically modifying cannabis],” says Betty Aldworth, deputy director of the National Cannabis Industry Association. “The possibility of genetically modifying cannabis is so far down the road, no one [in the professional cannabis industry] is even discussing the possibility.”
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