The Future Of Genetically Modified Foods: Good Or Bad?

1461 Words 6 Pages
A technology exists that can alleviate some of the problems plaguing the world’s food supply. Food scarcity, malnutrition, and the misuse of natural resources can all be diminished by the process of genetic engineering. However, the expansion is hindered by the controversy it ignites. It is one of the few topics that crosses political boundaries: those wary of the government and those at odds with large corporations both share a distrusting view of the safety of genetically engineered foods, also referred to as genetically modified foods, or as the more catchy term, GMOs. This new technology has proven to not be harmful though. The differences between foods altered and foods unaltered do not make a difference in safety. Claims do exist that …show more content…
The claims have been evaluated by neutral scientists who constantly find fault in some aspects of the study or logic (7). Commonly it is said the foods cause allergies, citing the increase in allergies as corresponding with the rise of genetically modified foods. In the instance of soy, however, the allergies began more prevalent even before genetically modified soy was commercially available (7). A study linking it to gluten allergies was found to be flawed (1). Another concern is that genetically modified foods can cause cancer. This fear was brought on by a study in which rats fed GMO corn developed tumors. The study was discredited by the Royal Society, retracted, and republished without peer review though once it was uncovered the rats were a specific strain with a predisposition for tumors (1,5). Other major diseases have been said to be triggered by genetically modified foods including autism, Parkinson’s, and Alzheimer 's. This is due to a single article that stated this hypothesis yet had no research to support it (1). It could not even be found in a reputable journal; instead, it was a pay-for-play, one in which the author actually pays the journal to publish their works (1). Many of the attacks against GMOs have been specifically about those modified to produce Bt as this is the most common genetic alteration. Bt is a protein normally produced by …show more content…
Major governing bodies attest to this, including the United States Academy of Sciences, American Medical Association, and the World Health Organization (8). Also, there exists thousands of independent studies, funded by neither governments or corporations, that agree genetically modified foods are safe (7). They may even be more safe than foods conventionally bred. This is because GMOs must undergo extensive safety testing before being available to consumers (5). These tests are not conducted by potentially biased corporations either. Instead, it is done by the Food and Drug Administration, Environmental Protection Agency, and the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal, and Plant Health (5). In such testing, the proteins are analyzed to determine if they are similar to any known toxins or allergens (8). The proteins are then broken down to see if any of their components are harmful and to ensure they have the proper acidity and digestibility for the human body (8). So far, the testing has been proven to be effective. There has been cases where genetically modified foods have been deemed unfit, yet they were stopped before making it into the food supply. Such was the case with a variant of modified soy, it was found to cause allergies so the project was ceased (5). During the testing of a type of altered peas, a potential lung allergy

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