Genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are foods created using recombinant DNA biotechnological techniques that allow for the alteration of a life form’s genetic makeup, which may occur by fusing features from various life forms or by enhancing the actual qualities. Genetically engineered foods include delayed ripening bananas, beetle-resistant potatoes, and many others. The use of genomic foods in food production is proving combative and attracting the advertising industry, which receives hard facts. These foods pose a slew of scientific, cultural, social, economic, and political issues. This article, therefore, gives prompt wellsprings of data by outlining the benefits associated with these foods and their downsides.
Genetic engineered foods have shown more pest resistance hence doubled production. Consequently, the use of pesticides is reduced thereby better foods free from hazardous pesticides. The growth of these foods has also enhanced the production of stronger crops immune to extreme weather conditions and fluctuations, therefore, bringing about food security irrespective of the period of the year. Such plants can withstand prolonged drought, and extreme cold weather, thereby sustaining the ever-growing world population. Additionally growing these plants have an effect on the global warming decrease. More plants contribute to increased oxygen levels thus lowering the percentage of carbon (IV) oxide thereby reducing global warming. Similarly, genetically modified foods increase the farmer’s earnings hence they will have better savings due to the reduced expenses. Reduction of costs, however, does not compromise the quality of the foods. (Kuiper et al., 2001) Consumers will have the capacity to distinguish foods rich in specific nutrients needed for their health, which is in contrast with the natural products present in the market hence managing their diet effectively.
The growth of genetically modified foods, however, has a fair share of their detriments. A worrying concern is the capability of the foods to bring about allergic reactions. “Genetic modification often adds or mixes proteins that were not indigenous to the original animal or plant, which might cause new allergic reactions in our body.” (Craig et al., 2008) Additionally, proteins from creatures that you are susceptible to may add to life forms that you were not initially hypersensitive to thereby reducing your range of food choices. Further, the health of the consumer is exposed. Researchers claim the consumption of these foods is entirely safe since producers do not highlight the dangers of consuming these foods. Dona & Arvanitoyannis (2009) maintain that the labeling of functional foods is far from informative, providing insufficient information about nutritional value, storage, and cooking recipes. Therefore, consumers have little confidence regarding these foods as they deem them not to be entirely safe to consume. These products also have antibiotic features incorporated into them making them immune to sicknesses or infections. When users ingest these products, the antibiotic markers persevere in their bodies thus rendering real antibiotic medications less effective. Pusztai (2011) warns that ingestion of these foods and regular exposure to antibiotics may contribute to the reduced effectiveness of antibiotic drugs. As the popularity of these foods increase, food supply, and safety concerns also surface. Comstock (2010) did a research and found that nations may utilize genetic designing of these foods as an effective weapon against their foes.
Genetically modified foods can conceivably take care of many craving and ailing health issues in the world today and similarly help ensure and safeguard the nature by expanding yields and decreasing dependence on chemical pesticides and herbicides. Notwithstanding, it is vital to carry on with a watchful eye to avoid disappointments for the environment and the wellbeing of consumers, considering that genetic technology is very dominant.
Comstock, G. (2010). Ethics and genetically modified foods. In Food Ethics (pp. 49-66). Springer New York.
Craig, W., Tepfer, M., Degrassi, G., & Ripandelli, D. (2008). An overview of general features of risk assessments of genetically modified crops. Euphytica, 164(3), 853-880.
Dona, A., & Arvanitoyannis, I. S. (2009). Health risks of genetically modified foods. Critical reviews in food science and nutrition, 49(2), 164-175.
Kuiper, H. A., Kleter, G. A., Noteborn, H. P., & Kok, E. J. (2001). Assessment of the food safety issues related to genetically modified foods. The plant journal, 27(6), 503-528.
Pusztai, A. (2001). Genetically Modified Foods: Are They a Risk to Human/Animal Health?. Actionbioscience. org. June.