Genetically Modified Food Innovation? Or Danger? Michael
History and Purpose• The first genetically engineered food fit for consumption was the “Flavr Savr” tomato developed in 1994 by the Monsanto corporation.• The tomato was engineered to be more resistant to over-ripening and rot, thus giving a longer shelf life.• Since then, numerous fruits and vegetables have been modified to increase resistance to disease, crop yield, and nutrition.• Livestock animals such as salmon and cattle are being researched in their potential as genetically modified foods.
Process• When specified and isolated, a certain gene that yields one trait in one organism, can be implanted in another organism to produce that same trait.• For example, a gene is isolated in flounder which gives the fish resistance to cold, that gene can then be fused with a tomato’s DNA to produce a tomato that is resistant to cold. Different genes can fused with totally different organisms.• Bottom Line: Desirable genes from one species can be implanted in a same or different species to produce an organism with more desirable and beneficial traits.
Modifying our Food Benefits Risks• Higher crop yields and less loss of • Such efficient production of foods could produce create lower food prices for create near monopolies of agriculture businesses, and dominate the the consumer. That coupled with the agricultural market, causing great fact that many GM foods are unbalance. Domestic and foreign food engineered to be more nutritious and consumption could also become healthy, allows easier access to a dependent on only several companies. more beneficial food. Such high demand could cause a greater rise in massive factory farms . • A very resilient organism could cause• Bioengineering in food is another other organisms to die off and trigger a step forward in science; it can only chain reaction and imbalance in an lead to greater discoveries for the ecosystem. The different genes in a modified organism could also have world. It creates a more, productive, unknown effects on organism in or organized, and above all, smarter around it, such as producing bacteria agriculture industry. resistant to antibiotics.
Labeling our Food• Labeling genetically modified foods is a service to the consumer. Shoppers deserve to know what they are eating, and what has been done to what they are eating.• If consumers are concerned about any health risks from GM foods, it would be dangerous to not specify which foods are modified and which are not.• It’s a safe choice for companies, because if any problems occurred due to their food, the customer at least knew what they may have been risking.
Not Labeling our Food• Labeling GM foods could cause people to abstain from the larger companies that supply them, and lead to difficult shifts in food production and the agriculture industry, for example, major losses in large companies.• GM foods do not pose any real threat, so there is simply no need to specify.• Labeling could cause a large loss in support of bioengineering, and hinder any new advances in the field.
My Opinion• Genetically modifying our foods, I think, is an extreme benefit to modern society.• GMOs produce more food, cheaper, which all goes back to the consumer.• There is no clear evidence that GM foods are dangerous to human health in any way.• GM foods are, technically, the same food, just improved.• Labeling our foods for GMO would most likely cause a loss in support of genetic modification, which is moving backward. Different advances in one field of science can lead to advances in another, and letting something as revolutionary as bioengineering die, would pose a great loss to society.
Works Cited• Breuning, G., and JM Lyons. "California Agriculture Online." California Agriculture Online. University of California, n.d. Web. 09 Jan. 2013.• "Genetically Modified Foods and Organisms --HGP Ethical, Legal, and Social Issues."Genetically Modified Foods and Organisms --HGP Ethical, Legal, and Social Issues. United States Department of Energy Office of Science, n.d. Web. 09 Jan. 2013.• United States. Food and Drug Administration. Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition.Bioengineered Foods. By Robert E. Brackett, Ph.D. Food and Drug Administration, n.d. Web. 09 Jan. 2013.