The Ultimate Goal
GMOs are genetically modified organisms that have the ability to change the world. A more in depth definition used in the scientific field can be described as, “organisms whose genetic material has been modified in a way that doesn’t occur in nature under natural conditions of cross-breeding or natural recombination,” according to the article, Genetically Modified Organisms. GMOs have gained a bad reputation towards the majority of the public, when they can provide positive results. GMOs should be allowed in food production because they are cost efficient, require less pesticides, and have the possibility of ending world hunger. These factors are beneficial to the public in more ways that they could be harmful. GMOs are proven to be non-harmful, illustrating another reason why genetically engineered foods can provide essential changes for the world.
One reason GMOs are beneficial to food production is because they are cost efficient. According to the National Academy of Science, the World Health Organization, and many other major worldwide science organizations, genetically modified organisms have no evidence that they can be harmful to humans, stated by MedlinePlus. Genetic engineering provides a more cost efficient way to provide food for the public. Starting by having a longer shelf life. This is beneficial because consumers will not have to worry about their food going bad. This shows that consumers will not need to buy more food, or spend more money. “Farmers will lower herbicides used,” Borie Theis Nielsen said in the article Genetically Modified Organisms and World Hunger. This could save money for the economy allowing money to be used in more needed areas. The preservation of food would cause a trickle down effect. If grocery stores make less shipments, they would not have to pay for as many shipments. Drivers would make less trips leading to saving more money. There would not be as much gas used or paid for leading to less usage of fossil fuels. Not only would the economy be saving money, but they would also be saving limited resources. Using this scientific advancement, GMOs can save money without any unwanted consequences.
Along with being cost efficient, GMOs do not require the use of pesticides. Pesticides are chemicals that are used on foods to prevent insects, fungi, and weeds from destroying crops, (Stephenson, 2006). Although this seems like a good idea, it truly is the opposite. Pesticides are toxic to humans and the environment. Side effects may include cancer and damage the human’s reproductive immune and nervous systems. Ingesting these toxins at high amounts can be lethal. Pesticides can ultimately pollute the environment by contaminating the soil, water, and even the air. Too many pesticides can harm humans, wildlife, and neighboring lands. There are older pesticides that have been banned around the world. However, these remains linger in the soils and water for many years. Instead of using pesticides to increase yields, scientists can use GMOs to safely protect crops for these pests. Developing countries are already experiencing deaths from pesticides. They are one of the leading causes of death. If counties continue to use pesticides they have the ability to end the human race.
Solving world hunger may seem like an unattainable goal, but GMOs have the potential to end this catastrophe. People that suffer from hunger also face malnutrition. Malnutrition directly correlates with Vitamin-A deficiency. Currently, there are 140 million children that are deficient in Vitamin-A. A portion of these children become blind and die within 12 months of losing their sight, stated by Jamil Kaiser. In order to solve this problem, scientists have begun using biotechnology to create Genetically Modified rice. Also known as Golden Rice. These biotechnicians have inserted 3 new genes into rice that help it produce pro Vitamin-A. Kaiser believes that golden rice has the potential to save many lives including these children.
A common fallacy associated with GMOs is that they have less nutrients than the normal food. This viewpoint argues that GMOs create larger foods resulting in less vitamins and minerals. However, genetically modified organisms have not been proven to have less nutrients. Instead, specific foods are designed to contain extra nutrients. According to research done by Kennedy, “a modified form of African corn contains 169 times more beta-carotene than traditional crops”. Along with this benefit, the African corn has 6 times the amount of Vitamin C than staple foods. This example shows how much of an impact GMOs have on nutrition. Inserting more nutrients into foods may allow for people suffering from hunger to get more vitamins and minerals with a smaller portion. These nutritional benefits may help people suffering from deficiencies around the world. Adding these extra nutrients can allow crops in underdeveloped countries to provide the essential qualities they may not get from the foods they grow nearby.
GMOs are a cost efficient way to reduce the use of pesticides, and can potentially end world hunger. This is a huge benefit to society, and can change the world. Using GMOs would allow for less expensive labor in production and pesticide dispersion. Not only do these modifications cost less money, but they also provide food for people in need. Genetically modified organisms open a ton of doors into the future, which can better food production as a whole. GMOs should be allowed in food production because they are cost efficient, use less pesticides, and have the possibility of ending world hunger.
A.D.A.M. “Genetically Engineered Foods.” MedlinePlus (2021).
UDRISTE, Anca Amalia, and Liliana BADULESCU. “Genetically modified organisms.” Research Journal of Agricultural Science 49.4 (2017).
Borie, Colin, Hugo Hello, and Thomas Theis Nielsen. “Genetically Modified Organisms and World Hunger.”
Jamil, Kaiser. “Biotechnology – A Solution to Hunger?” United Nations, United Nations, 2019, http://www.un.org/en/chronicle/article/biotechnology-solution-hunger
M. Kennedy. “Evidence-based pros and cons of GMO Foods.” Insider Health (2020).
Stephenson, Gerald R., et al. “Glossary of terms relating to pesticides (IUPAC Recommendations 2006).” Pure and Applied Chemistry 78.11 (2006).