Genetically Modified Foods
Lashauna D. Hinton
August 27, 2011
With the projected 9 billion plus humans living on earth in the middle of this century, there will be a huge food and water crisis. The wars over food and water will be a definite. Even though these foods are being produced more and on a regular basis, they still may not feed all the people spread over the earth. It is not a production lack, but levels of political and economical issues that prevent food from reaching national, local, and international hungry people (Shah, 1998).
Genetically modified foods have been around for quite some time. There are a lot of foods that we are currently eating that have grown larger or doubled in size and color for better quality. There are a few good ideas that come along with modifying food genetically. The increasingly growing genetic modification of crops would definitely speed up the growth rates of producing more crops and farmers would have an advantage on improvement on certain nutrition and/or diseases. There will also be a cut out of chemical usage to ward off bugs and weeds. By genetically modifying these plants, farmers are not only able to add different vitamins to improve health in humans, but they are also able to save money and not ruin the soil, water and environment with the use of pesticides. Farmers now have the ability to cut back cost and produce more products while using fewer seeds in the process by genetically modifying food (Oracle, 2011). With all the great ideas of being able to add genes to these plants that can help with our health, comes along with controversy and the unknown. Like over using antibiotics, these plants that may be genetically modified to help medically could pose a risk of new viruses forming. Although these products would be lab tested before human consumption, there is still a potential health risk from genetically modified foods. Genetic hazards, toxins, allergens, and immunological issues could all be health risk associated with genetic food consumption (Conner, et. al, 1999).
Many consumers like myself, are impressed with what we can do now with food. It is an accomplishment, being able to alter and supply a great amount of food in a short time, but many (as well as myself, friends, and family that I’ve spoken with) are apprehensive about trying these foods. It’s different to eat something when you have no knowledge of what really happened during its growth process, verses being told up front, then knowing that there is a risk factor attached. Once, or if, those factors are ironed out, genetically modified food could be a beginning to improving the hunger in the world.
Conner, A. & Jacobs, J. M.E. Genetic engineering of crops as potential source of genetic hazard in the human diet. Mutation Research: Genetic Toxicology and Environmental Mutagenesis. Vol. 443, 1999. Pp. 223-234.
Oracle. Genetically Altered. How Much Better is Bigger and Better. Retrieved on September 24, 2011, [Online] from http://library.thinkquest.org/TQ0312650/food.htm
Shah, Anup. “Genetically Engineered Food.” Global Issues. 26 Sep. 2002. Web. 22 Sep. 2011. http://www.globalissues.org/issue/188/genetically-engineered-food
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