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Biotechnology

  • By: Amandine J. Bled
  • In: Green Business: An A-to-Z Guide
  • Edited by: Nevin Cohen & Paul Robbins
  • Subject:Sustainability, Environmental Policy & Law (general)

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) was the first international organization to have proposed a definition of biotechnology in 1982. They defined biotechnology as “the application of science and technology to living organisms as well as parts, products and models thereof, to alter living or nonliving materials for the production of knowledge, goods and services.” This technical definition includes a broad range of products and reveals in practice that biotechnology applications are part of our everyday life. Indeed, one of the oldest applications of biotechnology is the use of microorganisms for the production of foods such as yogurt, cheese, beer, and pharmaceuticals, including antibiotics. Since 1980, modern biotechnology has emerged to complement these initial techniques, this time by using genetic manipulation.

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