Genetically Modified Organism (GMO) is commonly applied to reference enhanced products created when genes from a specific species are artificially forced and incorporated into other genes structures of either unrelated animals or plants in laboratory conditions. These genes can originate from a variety of sources such as a living plant or creature and are then forced into the genetic structure of another (Commoner).
In crops the GM technology aids by incorporating all the desirable traits from nature and into the crops; hence, enhancing the crops. GMO products were first introduced into the food supply chain during the 1990s, as a result, they have emerged as one of the most controversial issues owing to the numerous advantages and disadvantages. Despite the negative implications associated with GMOs, some of the advantages of genetically engineered crops for farmers include, but not limited to, high yields, insect, disease and weather resistance and long-lasting crops.
Advantages of GMO Crops for Farmers
One of the primary advantages of GMO crops for farmers is high yields, this is because it take a lot less land to grow and harvest more food as GMO crops can be engineered specifically to increase yields, thus from the same croplands. In some instances, crop yields tend to double when farmers transition from traditional to GMO crops, this therefore, makes it possible to meet demands and also increases their profits from the sale of the crops.
Another advantage of GMO crops for farmers is that most are modified to make them not only insect but also weed resistant. In most instances, toxic bacteria which is safe for human consumption is combined with crops in order to enable them to repel insects such is in the case of soya beans being combined with an alien gene for herbicide resistance (Commoner). For farmers, this means a massive reduction in the amount of pesticides applied on plants, which ultimately translates in reduced farming costs as well as reduced labor. In addition, stronger ability to resist pests also aids farmers in producing higher amounts of crops. One of the major problems faced by farmers is crop diseases as it results in financial losses due to the destruction of plants, unlike regular crops, GMO crops are highly beneficial because most of them are designed to resist some of the common diseases this therefore, eliminates costs associated with crop spraying or crop destruction by diseases (Commoner).
GMO technology is also advantageous to farmers as crops are modified or engineered for the purpose of withstanding weather extremes as well as fluctuations, for farmers, this therefore means sufficient and high quality yields even in instances of severe and poor weather conditions. GMO crops are also advantageous because they are modified to grow in unsuitable lands; hence, they are capable of thriving in regions with not only adverse climates but also regions with poor soils that were previously unsuitable for plant cultivation, moreover, some of the GMO crops are also designed to withstand areas with groundwater as well as soil with high salt content, this therefore, enabling farmers to utilized the previously infertile and unsuitable crop lands.
Genetically Modified Crops are also easily preserved; hence, long lasting, this is made possible through genetic engineering which is designed to make sure that these crops do not get damaged at a fast rate. As a result, this method allows not only famers but also merchants to presence all their high quality yields more efficiently and effectively.
Commoner, B. “Unravelling the DNA Myth”. Grain Org. https://www.grain.org/article/entries/375-unravelling-the-dna-myth