Local News

TONIGHT AT 11: Communities Hope Catch Phrase Catches On

Posted January 15, 2004

— Biotech is an economic buzz word.

Counties to the North are developing an industrial park with biotech jobs in mind. Greenville has a small hub, and Johnston County is hoping to add biotech to its pharmaceutical base.

"I think it's agreed upon that biotech will expand," North Carolina State University economics professor Mike Walden said. "There is some disagreement as to how fast and how many jobs will be created."

Walden said it is attractive for communities where tobacco and textiles are disappearing from the economic landscape. Some biotech byproducts in the works include altering pig organs to be used in humans, even studying pine trees to make them more drought resistant.

Although biotech's end result offers great promise, Walden said communities looking for new life and new jobs need to be careful.

"I don't think any community can put all of its eggs in one basket and think biotech is going to be its savior," Walden said.

For the rest of this story, watch Thursday's WRAL News at 11 p.m.

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