Source: Composite by G_marius based on University of Michigan School of Natural Resources & Environment's and Nancy Regan's images
There is a lot of controversy around the pros and cons of genetically modified food. Do you think GMOs are dangerous? Please vote and explain your views!
Genetically modified foods (or GM foods) are foods derived from organisms whose genetic material (DNA) has been modified in a way that does not occur naturally. Genetic engineering allows enhancing desired traits such as increased resistance to herbicides and diseases, increased drought tolerance, and improved nutritional content, in a cost effective way.
GMO pros and cons
The following is a list with the most commonly argued pros for the utilization of GMOs:
- Genetic modification not only allows producing more food, but also it increases the proportion of nutrients, and helps adapting the taste of any food to the customer.
- Using some resistant breeds it is possible to cultivate in places where previously not exploited due to the weather or terrain. Thus GMOs helps enlarging farming areas.
- Some genetically modified plants have been designed to be more resistant to insect plagues, by introducing genes and bacterias that acts as a repellant for insects while being safe for human consumption. This means it’s not necessary to use chemical pesticides, which is a positive for environment.
However, some risks are also associated to genetically modified food:
- The use of genetically modified plants resistant to herbicide can be very counterproductive in the long run, because of crossbreading. Weeds can easily cross-breed with genetically modified commercial plants, and thus acquire the genes resistant to herbicides become a nightmare for farmers.
- Allergies are also a big problem. GMO often add new features to the food. Some people may be allergic to them and thus not being able to consume the genetically modify version of that food.
- Antibiotics resistance can also be a problem. Genetically modified food often includes some sort of antibiotic features, and may contribute to the antibiotic resistance of its consumers, a major health problem according to the WHO.
After considering the pros and cons, do you think we should continue increasing the production of of GMOs? Which of these problems or advantages do you think we should pay more attention to? Should governments and international organizations further regulate it?
If you change your mind, you can change your vote simply by clicking on another option.
Is genetically modified food dangerous? Join the debate on the pros and cons of GMOs
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