Genetically Engineered Foods Essay

917 WordsNov 26, 20134 Pages
Genetically modified foods are foods and crops that have been genetically engineered to grow more rapidly and more resistant to pests. The common claim for GE foods is that they are improvements on our natural growing crops, and they introduce new assets such as higher amounts of beneficial vitamins and minerals. Biotechnology (or genetically modifying food) is proclaimed to be a new innovative method for creating a more plentiful, higher quality, and nutritious food supply. The first articles I read were mostly about the benefits and good results that can come from genetically modified foods. While organically and traditionally grown foods have transported many different characteristics of the food we eat, genetic engineering can make it easier to narrow the characteristics specifically to what we need faster and in larger numbers. Another benefit to this is that these foods stay fresh longer resist pests and disease and therefore need less pesticides to grow and produce. The other significant claim that supports biotechnology is that they are safe and have a greater chance of helping our global environment. This is first because they resist the pests and diseases so they do not need chemicals which would compromise the environment and second because some of them require less tilling which preserves important topsoil, in turn reducing sediment run off into streams and rivers. While there are strict rules on labeling, because these foods are said not to differ much as far as how they are grown from traditional foods, the FDA does not require them to be labeled. While this all seemed very beneficial and like our society was taking the right step in the choice with GE foods, I then read the remaining articles which did not support biotechnology so strongly. While genetic engineering claims to be an extension of the traditional breeding method of our crops, the

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