The last hundred years have seen unprecedented improvement in the lives of billions of people. Entire nations have pulled themselves out of poverty using a diverse array of technologies and techniques created by developed nations typically in conjunction with the developing nation. Many of the remaining nations still stuck in poverty suffer from governments that either don't care, or, worse, view their continued existence contingent on the populace's impoverished state, whether true or not.
For those in such countries, the paths taken by others for self-enrichment are not viable. Additionally, it is often these who are the most poor, struggling just to find enough food on a daily basis. It is here that modern genetic engineering science and technology may be able to help.
The Poverty Buster is a food source that satisfies the following conditions:
- It can be cultivated almost anywhere that a human can live.
- Some manageable amount contains a full day's supply of all nutrients (proteins, minerals, vitamins, etc.) necessary for indefinite continuance of human life. This is one "serving."
- Its continued cultivation requires minimal, if any, human involvement for most regions of human habitability.
- It is genetically stable insofar that it is resistant to cross-breeding with other organisms (including its original unmodified form), and that it is resistant to mutations that reduce its nutritional value or make it dangerous in any way to ingest.
Because of conditions 1 and 3, the most likely type of food source will be of the plant or fungal variety, rather than animal. The easiest way to achieve all conditions in one organism I would expect to be heavily modifying a common weed or possibly grass. To be of most value, if it is indeed a modified form of a common plant, it should also be modified to be clearly distinct from all other plants. Perhaps make it purple with yellow polka dots.
Satisfying all the above conditions would also make it quite suitable to grow in extraterrestrial environments with Earth-like conditions (i.e. breathable air and near-Earth gravity or centrifugal force). Further modification may even make it able to grow in micro gravity environments, allowing for the production of fresh food in outer space.