Genetic engineering is already
being used for medications, also known as Genetic Modified insulin (GM insulin).
Yet weather Genetic engineering can and should be used in foods is strongly
Genetic Modification on food has
been practiced by human for millennia. It is similar to the principle of Charles
Darwin: Survival of the fittest. Plants with certain beneficial traits/ genes
(like: Bigger food, sweeter fruit, plants that have more edible product etc.)
have been used for breeding, also called “Selective Breeding”. Over time plants
have developed and left us with the food that we have today. But humans starve
for perfection and try to improve in any way possible. So as Selective breeding
was rather a matter of luck and time, GMO’s (Genetically Modified Organisms)
were controllable. Scientists could chose to make the plant bigger, sweeter,
immune to pests etc. But GMO’s did not come without any limitations.
The existence of GMO’s could cause
unwanted characteristics to appear in crops through gene flow (GM mixing with
the original crop). For the purpose to prevent this, scientists created Terminator
seeds, which would unfortunately create sterile plants, which means that
farmers would have to buy new crops/seeds every year.
Now GMO’s are checked for dangers,
as they are made for being eaten and scientists have found out that eating GMO’s
is the same risk as eating none modified food. Still the safety of eating GMO’s
is being questioned as there are so called BT crops (Bacillus thuringiensis
crops). Those crops are made by borrowing a gene from Bacillus thuringiensis
and produce their own pesticide, causing the insects that eat the crops to die.
The “problem here, is that while you can wash off spray pesticides, the
pesticide in a BT crop stays in the plant. Even though those toxins can kill
insects, they are not dangerous for us humans, as they were specifically designed
for destroying certain insect’s digestive system.
that scientists have developed plants that are resistant to weed killers.
Nowadays about 90% of the crops in the United States are herbicide resistant.