Genetic Modified Foods
Genetic modification is a biotechnological process which modifies the genes to behave in certain characteristics. This changing characteristic of life form is based upon changing their biological part of the cell called the DNA (Deoxyribonucleic Acid) the acid that carries the genetic information of our body in a cell. This technology is being used for mutating the genes of animals, plants and micro-organisms. This technique was discovered with the primary reason to improve the taste of the food products and improve on the nutritious quality.
Gene Mutation has been the largest food experiments in the history but it is important to discharge this misconception about the environment of food. Genetic Modification is a mixed blessing that has benefits but does give rise to problems. Genetic engineering shows benefits in recent but the near future is unpredicted. It is also a very young and untested technology and may not be the answer just yet. Its long term effects are unknown. It may be that the genetic engineered crops could make profits in the future but we cannot decide at the very moment as much needed testing has not been done therefore the current studies point to dangers rather than benefits. The benefits are making fruits ripen faster, improving the taste and physical appearance, and provide the Third World countries with cheap and healthy food. Genetic modification has won the admiration of a lot of people because of its new and attractive accomplishments, but we should also take in the disadvantages caused by the same foods and try to avoid them.
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Genetically modified food consist several disadvantages that can be avoided through research. The first disadvantage is the sale of GMFs being permitted without implying the risks to the consumer public of the potential danger. This is violation of human rights which can simply be avoided by informing the consumers about the product. Labelling of a genetic product is very imperative as the splicing of the other gene may contain material against the religious aspects. When insertion of new genes takes place in an organism, it can lead to disorder and unpredictable changes in our gene makeup. "In fact, the process of inserting genes is quite random and can damage normal genes".
Therefore there are chances that possibly can create new dangerous diseases. An example could be when a certain amount of people are allergic to definite kinds of food products such as fish and if they consume a Genetically modified product such as tomatoes; with the plasmid of fish, the consumer of tomato's will easily get affected. Past experiments show that when rats were fed with GM potatoes affected their digestive tracks and caused bad effects on their immune system.
Many GMF products such as tomatoes, potatoes, corn, cheese, soybeans, caffeine, yeast, banana, salmon, are entering the market. The main problem is the issue of labelling these products is still not used though most developed countries have considered the importance and have adopted the laws for labelling the ingredients. This information provides the consumers with choice and awareness. GMF producers have to label their products and provide their consumer with all necessary information. In this manner the rights of the consumers to decide for themselves can be availed. Tomatoes are the source of Vitamin C, but if it is modified it loses its characteristics (Vitamin C) and the patrons have the right to know about the change.
The incorrect treatment of GMF causes several environmental hazards. It is proven that GM crops can easily be grown in all kinds of soils. They can grow in land prone to erosion or drought and in the soils with highly salt acid conditions (Genetically Modified food). This advantage of the Gene Mutation is widely misused as farmers over use herbicides (Chemical that kill herbs) which harms the soil and greatly affects the performance of it for later on. This also pollutes groundwater and can cause a range of other kinds of ecological damages. These situations are not correctly judged by some people, as many think that these damages are caused to the soil by the growth of the GMF crops on the soil and not by the herbicides. These kinds of damages occur purely because of the ignorance of the farmers which can be solved by simply spreading awareness to the farmers and educating them with the new system of GM Farming then the usual Organic farming.
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Farmers should be taught the correct agricultural techniques of GM crops. A further major problem to our environment apart from soil is that some GM crops are insect-resistant and therefore many harmless insects get killed. Crop regularity, which the biotech firm are endorsing, will reduce genetic diversity making them more vulnerable to disease and pests. GM crops can also contaminate natural crops through the natural process of the plant reproduction which means it will carry the genetically mutated seeds into the neighbouring fields by mistake and influence other natural food products. "In February thousands of bags of corn chips that had been imported from US had to be destroyed in the UK when tests revealed that they contained genetically engineered corn". This happened due to genetically engineered corn field polluted the neighbours field which was growing in an organic method.
Genetic engineered foodstuff is essential to solve world hunger as many people are suffering from Starvation and malnutrition. One Homo sapiens in 7 is starving. The problem of food storages is a political and economical crisis. Many people at different places of the world suffer from hunger just because they can't afford to purchase food and also because it is unavailable. GMF can be a solution to end the world hunger crisis with shrinking rates of foods. Nowadays consumers seek quality and taste in their food choices and companies are working to improve their production in to profits. Tomatoes are modified to taste like the home-grown ones. As a result, they are available in the market and sold at cheaper rates than the one ranched in organic farms. Consumers are attracted by its look that encourages people to buy them. Future products include potatoes that will absorb lesser oil, soybeans and corn with improved protein contents where as strawberries with natural sweetness as the research communicates and importance of Cloning.
Vegetarians have problems when transfusion of animal gene is spliced into a plant. Vegetarians are afraid of eating genetically mutated vegetables as they are now injected with animal genes. One fact that the population does not realize is that the scientists add new genes from animals to improve the protein content in plants. There is no meat portion of an animal in the vegetables. "One of the things people probably don't realize is that there are genes in humans and animals that are in plants. There is a gene that occurs in rice that also occurs in the human brain. Vegetarians would not avoid rice because of that." which means Vegetarians can feel safe when they intake GMF but if it goes against their religions or caste's rules and regulations it is not good to ingest such kind of food as it against their ethical values.