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Genetically Modified Foods were first sold commercially in 1994, since then farmers have been using them to boost the amount of produce that can be made and the quality of the produce. I am supportive of Genetically Modified Foods because, with a few alterations to how farmers use them, they can help us to provide a sustainable amount of food for the human race.

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The issue that Genetically Modified Foods (GMF’s) is trying to solve is that plants are very susceptible towards insecticides, herbicides and harsh weather conditions which causes a lower amount of produce for farmers to sell and for society to consume. The aim of Genetically Modified foods is to help plants to live longer by making them resistant to these chemicals and weather conditions. 

Genetically Modified crops have genes added or removed using genetic engineering techniques. The most common method of changing the genes of a crop is by using a gene gun where target genes are shot into plant cells. DNA is bound closely to tiny particles of tungsten or gold which are shot into plant cells and tissue at a high pressure. The accelerated particles are able to penetrate through the cell wall and membranes. The DNA separates from the metal and is integrated into the plants genomes inside the nucleus. This method has been applied successfully for many crops but the major disadvantage is that the process can cause serious damage to the cellular tissue. (“Genetically Modified”).

A major use of Genetic engineering is to fight against pests. BT plants have a gene inserted that produces a protein that kills insects that harm the plant, this reduces the use of pesticides greatly which improves the overall healthcare of the plants, and the people who produce and consume them. This protein is toxic for insects but actually has no harm at all to humans. The same can be said for coffee, which will kill an insect but we consume it all the time and it isn’t toxic. (“Are GMOs” 3:00 – 4:14).

The problem affects everyone that is connected to food. These conditions and chemicals cause plants to live less which means that there will be less produce for restaurants, stores and normal people. With an increasing population, the demand for food nowadays has become much higher so if there is less food being produced, there won’t be enough food. The problem also affects farmers heavily because their income is very low and not sustainable. This is due to the fact that they have less crops to sell and the quality of their crops isn’t good because of how easily plants can get damaged and killed. 

The only positive for this problem is that we can be sure that all our produce is natural and genetically pure. This means that all the genes in the plant have been inherited and no genes from other species have been integrated in the plants DNA. On the other hand, there are many negatives to this problem. As I mentioned before, income of farmers is affected as well as local market stalls and stores as they don’t have as much produce to sell. Additionally, eventually we wouldn’t have a sustainable amount of food for the population. Genetically changing crops allows us to produce more and better quality produce as well as bigger and more nutritious food.

Ever since Genetically Modified Foods were first produced, there has been controversy about them. There has been a large social impact of GMF’s which have changed the way the public buy and consume produce as well as on a larger scale like restaurants and food chains. The argument against changing genes in foods comes down to inserting genes from one species into another species in a process that would never occur naturally. Society is afraid that inserting genes that wouldn’t happen naturally will cause more damage than help and will deteriorate the health of humans. This negative image around the production of Genetically Modified Foods mean that there is an increase in demand for ‘organic’ produce. Simply stated, organic produce is grown without the use of pesticides, synthetic fertilisers, sewage sludge, genetically modified organisms, or ionising radiation. Nobody is aware of the process of GMF’s and that they’re actually safe. (“Frequently asked”).

There are many solutions for this problem, I will be talking about two of the main solutions. Inserting genes is the most common way that scientists are using to help solve this problem but another way that this problem could be solved is by using other organisms to help to naturally grow the crops that farmers desire, this is called natural inhibition. (“What does”).

Natural inhibition involves bringing an organism to a different place to consume or kill the crops or insects that are harming the farmers crops. For example, a farmer grows crop A and only wants to grow crop A but crop B is creating a competition for resources. Instead of using chemicals to kill crop B, the farmer brings in a species of animal that only like to eat crop B. This way crop B is killed and crop A grows more. The only negative for this solution is that it is a long process and requires time and patience to complete the process. 

There are many positives and negatives of GMF’s, the positives are that it is effective, it makes plants resistant and solves the problem directly. It also helps to produce larger amount of food that is of very high quality. The negatives of Genetically modified foods are that they can cause unwanted variants of organisms if they by mistake breed with normal crops. Additionally, they can also be very expensive and studies have shown that the use of herbicides have increased dramatically since GMF’s were introduced to the agricultural world. This is because plants are resistant to herbicides so farmers aren’t afraid to use them in large amounts. (“Are GMOs” 1:30-2:50).

In my opinion, Genetically Modified Foods are the perfect way to start to reverse all the damage that we have done to our planet. Although it is doing something that is unnatural and wouldn’t happen normally, we can make sure that we are able to create a sustainable amount of produce while our earths population is constantly increasing. GMF’s were given to farmers in Bangladesh in 2013 and in that year, the use of pesticides reduced by 80% due to the plants producing their own pesticide. Additionally, the income of Bangladeshi farmers more than doubled because of less pesticide use, higher yields and better market prices. That  For this reason, I would solve the problem of susceptible plants by creating Genetically Modified Foods. More importantly, I would make sure that the public is aware of how GMF’s work and that they are completely safe and don’t cause harm. (Al Jazeera). (“Are GMOs”).

Overall, Genetically Modified Foods bring many positive impacts both socially and agriculturally. The current situation on the controversy around GMF’s isn’t ideal but over time GMF’s will become the main type of produce. As we saw in the example of Bangladesh, the introduction of GM eggplants completely changed both the lives of the farmers and the society. GMF’s are the best way to increase agricultural production and create a sustainable food source. Natural inhibition is also a plausible solution but doesn’t have the same impact the GMF’s do because it is indirect and relies on multiple other factors to work. Science has solved the problem because we no longer have to worry about a plants susceptibility towards pests, herbicides and weather conditions.