The world is changing drastically in many ways. Harsh weather conditions are becoming worse due to the universally known problem of climate change. Droughts, floods, cold conditions in warm places, hot conditions in cool places have made it extremely hard to produce food. Not only has climate change affected the weather it also brings in plagues of pests. The environment is changing due to the effect of human impact and the world’s population is growing at an increasingly high rate. Many people are living in poverty and not receiving the nutrients they need from food. However there could be a way to combat some of these problems by making the growth of crops more successful. Using DNA technology foods can be genetically modified (GM) so that they are better suited for the environment or contain more nutrients.
But is GM Foods accepted by everyone? There are many ethical issues surrounding this technology, questioning the safety of it, tampering with nature and the effects on animals.
Today there are already many food products that we consume that have been genetically modified such as corn, wheat and rice to name a few. There are many reasons that foods have been modified. Some have been made to be resistant to insects, viruses and herbicides (Genetically modified foods, 2010). This is a huge advancement which helps us to grow crops in times of plagues and plant viruses. An example of this is, scientists have developed a corn that has an insect killing gene which produces an insecticide (Future Foods, 2002). With less insects eating the crops, there will be more harvest, which also means cheaper food prices.
Foods have also been modified to be healthier. A strain of rice has been modified so that it contains large amounts of vitamin-A (Future Foods, 2002). Adding more nutritional value to something as simple as rice could be a great solution for world dietary problems.
It has been said that food crops can be genetically modified to withstand the harsh conditions produced from climate change however there are foods being developed to fight global warming. In China a rice has been developed which requires less nitrogen fertiliser. This produces less nitrogen oxide (a greenhouse gas) (Richard, 2008). There is an ongoing debate on whether genetically modifying food should be encouraged to enhance crops to withstand harsh weather conditions. Making a certain crop resistant to frost or drought could help to keep Australian farms going and also keep food cheap. This problem with this solution is that we can only have a vague idea of what weather we are going to have. Therefore it would be pointless to develop a frost resistant crop before we have a warm winter. If a crop was made to grow better with the harsh weather, the weather has to be constantly the same and not continuously changing.
Many people also question the safety of GM Foods. GM Foods in Australia and New Zealand have to go through a strict safety assessment before they become...