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Why does this sound like Tomacco?

July 22nd, 2009 at 05:36pm

I’m forced to wonder if, my mind immediately thinking of Tomacco, when I read this story, means that there is something wrong with me?

From SBS News:

Australian scientists have found a way to boost crop yields in a move they say could help feed and clothe millions of people in a time of climate crisis.

Researchers at the University of Newcastle have found that by knocking out a gene from the genetic code of a tomato plant, it grows sweeter fruit and longer-lasting leaves.

Associate Professor Yong-Ling Ruan, from the University’s School of Environmental and Life Sciences, says the same technique could be used in a range of plants to boost crop yield and shelf-life.

OK, so it’s not quite the same, but you have to admit that there are some similarities to Tomacco:

Tomacco was originally a fictional plant that was a hybrid between tomatoes and tobacco, from the 1999 episode [of The Simpsons] “E-I-E-I-(D’oh)”.

The method used to create the tomacco in the episode is fictional. In the episode, the tomacco was accidentally created by Homer Simpson when he planted and fertilized his tomato and tobacco fields with plutonium. The result is a tomato that apparently has a dried, gray tobacco center, and, although being described as tasting terrible by many characters, is also immediately and powerfully addictive. The creation is promptly labeled “tomacco” by Homer and sold in large quantities to unsuspecting passersby.

A cigarette company, Laramie Tobacco Co., seeing the opportunity to legally sell their products to children, offers to buy the rights to market tomacco, but Homer refuses. Eventually, all of the tomacco plants are eaten by farm animals — except for the one remaining plant, which later goes down in an explosive helicopter crash with the cigarette company’s lawyers.


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