The whole world is engaging in heated and endless debates about genetically modified crops. The debate ranges from nutritionals, environmentalists, conservatives, politicians to even the clergy. All of them are raising concerns about the GM foods.
The concerns range from health, food security, environmental to evolution implications of the GMO plants. Initially, scientists engaged in selective breeding of organism in order to have new species with desirable and enhanced traits. The selective breeding was an entirely natural process, However, Genetic engineering causes altering of the species’ genetic structure. Health experts’ main concern is the safety of human consumers. Most of the GE plants cause adverse effects on the consumers.
The main concern in human use is that ordinary foods may turn allergic and even fatal. These include genetically modified crops like soybeans, alfalfa, potatoes and strawberry foods that have been genetically engineered thus having new traits. Some of the common foods will become toxic thus when ingested and digested may turn fatal to human consumers. BT toxins are safe in human beings but turn toxic in insects after activation in the insect tracts. GE crops may increase antibiotic resistance thus making humans susceptible to common disease, it weakens their immune system.
Health experts also have raised concerns about the regulatory bodies that allow introduction of genetically engineered foods into the market without appropriate measures. Regulatory agencies have been aggressive about protection of human health and environment; however they slacken their rules about introduction of the GMOs.
Development of BT crops may lead to harm or damage on non-target plants through the change of soil chemistry. Pesticide-resistant crops could be toxic to non-target organisms leading to possibility of genetic pollution.
The major GMO developers and growers are losing markets due to major anti-GMO campaigns. Most countries don’t want the genetically modified foods and have further implemented zero tolerance to any contamination of GMO crops thus 99% of GMO investments are backtracking. Some clergy advocate for the ban of GMO foods stating that it contravenes with their laws on natural pro-creation.
What Is The Public Debate On GM Crops In Other Regions Of The World?
In less developed countries, the main debates on GMOs are the substitution of conventional foods with GM Crops to manage food securities and food shortages. Most of these countries are facing acute droughts and food shortages. The main debates thereof concern the prioritization of food shortage or health implications of consuming GM Crops.
Genetic Engineering In Agriculture: Cat And Mouse Game?
Agricultural Genetic engineering is a controversial issue. On one hand it is a valuable new technology that can develop more quality and nutritious plants, with great benefits for humanity and the environment. Contrarily, the harmful side effects of genetic engineering in agriculture make it a double-edged sword. It is inevitable that we wish for better farming methods and increased food productivity but we shouldn’t overlook the dangers of the genetic engineering of food technology.