Cotton As Food?

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You normally can't eat cottonseeds. That's because they have a toxin in them that's harmful to both people and animals, but researchers at Texas A & M AgriLife Research may have found a way to feed people those seeds by removing the toxin.

Researchers have created a new cotton seed that can be eaten, ground into flour, and can even made into a peanut butter-like spread. This new cotton plant can still be used as a fiber. It's the work of Dr. Keerti Rathore.  He works in the Department of Soil and Crop Sciences at Texas A & M.  Dr. Rathore says, "with the toxin removed from the cotton seed, it can potentially feed 5,000,000 to 6,000,000 people per year.  I spent 23 years working on this project.  A lot of poor countries grow cotton as a crash crop and they also suffer from malnutrition. Imagine the goodwill it will generate around the world.  This technology came from Texas A & M and we are sharing it with the world." 

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has given the green light for the research to move forward.  The next step after inspections by the USDA is approval from the FDA and then it's on to commercialization.