• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

The GM Food Debate.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

The GM Food Debate The use of technology in agriculture has become the order of the day. Genetic engineering, an area of agro-technology is the most controversial way of growing crops. There are both advantages and disadvantages in producing GM foods. Genetic engineering techniques now allow scientists to insert specific genes into a plant or animal. Genetic engineering is therefore extremely rapid. The main objective of producing GM food is to meet the demand of consumers quickly and at the same time produce more to sell. (Reference: Textbook) The appearance of genetically modified foods in markets has resulted in many public debates, scientific discussion, and media coverage. The main concern over the GM food issue is that genetic modification techniques raises the possibility of human health, environmental, and economic problems, including allergies to certain substances in foods, the spread of pest resistance and wild plants' resistance against herbicides, kill wildlife, and increasing control of agriculture by biotechnology companies and organisations. ...read more.

Middle

One scientist admitted that knowledge of the effects was still very little and more studies had to be done. (Reference: David King, the government's chief scientific adviser and chair of 25-strong panel) The next concern is environmental hazard. Some GM foods can possess new substances that require greater study than organisms produced by traditional techniques since long-term ecological impacts of GM is extremely difficult to predict or study, it was recommended that the authorities be careful with the release of GM to the environment. (Reference: Ecological of America) A study was done a few years back and showed that GM foods caused problems to human health. (Reference: Nature, Vol 399, No 6733, p 214, May 1999) However, several groups have suggested that the experiment is flawed and studies are still being done. (Reference: Cambridge Scientific Abstracts) According to netscientist.com, there is no toxic effect In GM. (Reference: Shaoni Bhattacharya, From New Scientist Online News 16:01 21 July 03) ...read more.

Conclusion

Drought is also a problem in many places and with a special gene, farmers can create plants that can withstand long periods of drought or high salt content in soil. Places that have be unsuitable for cultivation can now be used. (Reference: CSA) Fourthly, Medicines and Vaccines can be inserted in tomatoes and potatoes, which can be easily stored and be eaten. Food could also have added nutrition like vitamins and minerals (Reference: Kurt Kleiner, From New Scientist Online News 18:42 10 July 03) According to newscientist.com, GM peanuts, tested on mice, could protect humans from allergies. In conclusion, I think that GM food, although attractive for its purposes, is still not safe for consumption. The long term effect is still not known and this could prove deadly for consumers of GM if an outbreak of a disease of some sort occurs. The environment could also be greatly affected due to the harmful substances that GM may contain. Until all information about GM is verified and is certified to be safe, I do not think GM should be used. Some Sources: http://www.i-sis.org.uk/GMfoodaid.php http://www.ucsusa.org/index.cfm http://www.newscientist.com/hottopics/gm/ http://www.nfu.org.uk/intradoc-cgi/idc_cgi_isapi.dll?IdcService=GET_DOC_PAGE&Action=GetTemplatePage&Page=NFU_HOME_PAGE http://www.usda.gov/Newsroom/0033.04.html ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Variation and Inheritance section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Variation and Inheritance essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Biology Case Study

    4 star(s)

    The group will do all the same tests done in phase 2, but is decisive because there are many many more people taking part. Phase 3 is the most expensive, time consuming and difficult trials to run. Phase 4 Phase 4 is also known as post marketing surveillance Trial.

  2. Marked by a teacher

    Evolution, what, and any evidence is there?

    4 star(s)

    Of particular importance to phylogenetic studies, the absence of a toilet claw and a toothcomb demonstrates that Darwinius masillae is not simply a fossil lemur, but part of a larger group of primates, Adapoidea, representative 1 of the early haplorhine diversification.? http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0005723 Editor: John Hawks, University of Wisconsin, United States

  1. Genetics Research

    This can cause pain, damage and a low blood count, or anemia. What makes the red cell sickle? There is a substance in the red cell called hemoglobin that carries oxygen inside the cell. One little change in this substance causes the hemoglobin to form long rods in the red cell when it gives away oxygen.

  2. Food Policy at a Crossroads, A World of Plenty or a World of Famine ...

    will deliver direct benefit to farmers and producers through improved production efficiency, such as plants requiring reduced fungicide and pesticide use, through increased inbuilt pest and disease resistance, and crops better able to cope with environmental stresses such as weeds."

  1. What is population genetics and how is it put to practical use?

    will be greatest when there are many alleles, all at equal frequency. It is also possible to calculate Average Heterozygosity (H) which gives the average number of heterozygotes per locus. DNA Sequence analysis and Segregation, Pairwise and Nucleotide Diversity.

  2. Should Biological Warfare Research Continue?

    Also, they used 'agent orange' to defoliate large areas of Vietnam and Laos. * The Soviet Union is said to have used biological agents in Afghanistan in the 1980s. * One of the most recent discoveries of biological weapons is that of Iraq.

  1. What are GM foods? - Assessing the risks and benefits

    The problem of cross-pollination from GM crops to non-GM crops also causes some concern for organic farmers, who feel their crops will become 'contaminated' and therefore not organic anymore. There is also concern that traits such as herbicide resistance may be transferred to a weed, where it might evolve a 'super-weed' which would be resistant to control.

  2. Pressure groups are important in the debate about Genetic modification. How would you define ...

    These groups are regularly invited to give government briefings to increase awareness on behalf of the mentally challenged. In exchange for their participation these groups help influence chosen decisions. Pressure groups try to influence the law by informing legislators of its member's preferences and why it is opposed to the changes being considered and implemented.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work