Definition[ edit ] Genetically modified foods are foods produced from organisms that have had changes introduced into their DNA using the methods of genetic engineering as opposed to traditional cross breeding. The technology is often called 'modern biotechnology' or 'gene technology', sometimes also 'recombinant DNA technology' or 'genetic engineering'. Foods produced from or using GM organisms are often referred to as GM foods.
Advertisement In Brief The vast majority of the research on genetically modified GM crops suggests that they are safe to eat and that they have the potential to feed millions of people worldwide who currently go hungry.
Yet not all criticisms of GM are so easily rejected, and pro-GM scientists are often dismissive and even unscientific in their rejection of the counterevidence. A careful analysis of the risks and benefits argues for expanded deployment and safety testing of GM crops.
Robert Goldberg sags into his desk chair and gestures at the air. He is expressing despair at the relentless need to confront what he sees as bogus fears over the health risks of genetically modified GM crops. Particularly frustrating to him, he says, is that this debate should have ended decades ago, when researchers produced a stream of exonerating evidence: But now anyone in this field knows the genome is not a static environment.
Inserted genes can be transformed by several different means, and it can happen generations later. Williams concedes that he is among a tiny minority of biologists raising sharp questions about the safety of GM crops.
But he says this is only because the field of plant molecular biology is protecting its interests. Funding, much of it from the companies that sell GM seeds, heavily favors researchers who are exploring ways to further the use of genetic modification in agriculture.
He says that biologists who point out health or other risks associated with GM crops—who merely report or defend experimental findings that imply there may be risks—find themselves the focus of vicious attacks on their credibility, which leads scientists who see problems with GM foods to keep quiet.
Whether Williams is right or wrong, one thing is undeniable: To researchers such as Goldberg, however, the persistence of fears about GM foods is nothing short of exasperating. When we look carefully at the evidence for both sides and weigh the risks and benefits, we find a surprisingly clear path out of this dilemma.
Benefits and worries The bulk of the science on GM safety points in one direction. Take it from David Zilberman, a U. Berkeley agricultural and environmental economist and one of the few researchers considered credible by both agricultural chemical companies and their critics.
He argues that the benefits of GM crops greatly outweigh the health risks, which so far remain theoretical. It has raised the output of corn, cotton and soy by 20 to 30 percent, allowing some people to survive who would not have without it.
If it were more widely adopted around the world, the price [of food] would go lower, and fewer people would die of hunger. The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization estimates that the world will have to grow 70 percent more food by just to keep up with population growth.
GM crops, Zilberman says, could produce higher yields, grow in dry and salty land, withstand high and low temperatures, and tolerate insects, disease and herbicides. Jen Christiansen Despite such promise, much of the world has been busy banning, restricting and otherwise shunning GM foods.
Nearly all the corn and soybeans grown in the U. Approval of a few new GM corn strains has been proposed there, but so far it has been repeatedly and soundly voted down.Evaluating the Risks and Benefits of Genetically Modified Agricultural Products _____ MALD Thesis - 1 - Noah Bessoff 1 INTRODUCTION 2 Global GMO Production in 5 Evaluating the Risks and Benefits of Genetically Modified Agricultural Products 11 UN Food and Agricultural Organization.
The Risks of GM Food. Prof. David Schubert July As a cell biologist I am very much discouraged by the content of the ongoing debate about introducing genetically .
Oct 30, · An analysis by The Times using United Nations data showed that the United States and Canada have gained no discernible advantage in yields — food . Guidance for Industry: Voluntary Labeling Indicating Whether Foods Have or Have Not Been Derived from Genetically Engineered Plants.
Browse Data & Analysis. Results Refined By: United Arab Emirates World Agricultural Production. September 12, Monthly report on crop acreage, yield and production in major countries worldwide.
covered by Office of Agricultural Affairs in Dubai, permit the importation of genetically engineered (GE) food products of plant origin.
Frequently asked questions on genetically modified foods May These questions and answers have been prepared by WHO in response to questions and concerns from WHO Member State Governments with regard to the nature and safety of genetically modified food.