Genetic modification, a technology that allows insertion of another DNA into the genome (the inheritable structure of an organism) that results in the pertinent production, either plants or organisms having a way more superior genetic then their parent or former host. Genetic modification in plants gives new or different characteristics which can include changing the way in which they grow in rough conditions or being resistant to disease as compared to the other which were more prone to diseases.
At present there are several GM crops used as food sources. As of now there are no GM animals approved for use as food, but a GM salmon has been proposed for FDA approval. In instances, the product is directly consumed as food, but in most of the cases, crops that have been genetically modified are sold as commodities, which are further processed into food ingredients. Some of them include cornstarch, corn syrup, corn oil, soybean oil, canola oil, or granulated sugar.
Regardless of its advantages like higher crop yield, reduced farm cost, increased farm profit, and higher nutrition, they are also prone to some possible setbacks and downsides which are not yet conclusive. Allergies, other anti-nutritional factors in foods, resistance to antibiotics, cancer, and stress upon the natural process of the environment, are some of them. Cotton is the only GM crop currently allowed for cultivation in India.
Although it’s risk and issues are not to be neglected, GMC can also have a certain level of scope in the near future with the provided technology, time and dedication, bringing forth a better GM plant or crops that are able to blend accordingly to the nature of the environment and at the same time alleviating all the chances and risks it has in consuming them.
Shuliba, NU Lumami