This refers to food that is created from organisms whose genes have been modified. Genetically modified Food has its DNA structure changed. DNA is the blueprint of every living organism and by altering it, the characteristics or qualities of plants are changed (Windley, 2008).
The purpose of human-made genetic recombination in food is to make crops resistant to the herbicides that are used in the farms. This way, the farms would be sprayed with herbicides that kill all weeds without having an effect on the actual crops- (Butcher, 2009). Theoretically, this is a very good model for the farmers who want to grow more crops and completely avoid damage from the weeds. Human beings also modify food organisms in order to make them have vitamins that may not be available in some varieties (Butcher, 2009).
Foods that contain genes resulting from artificial genetic recombination are not really safe. The science of transferring genes from one species to another was meant to be a great step forward but instead pose a very serious threat to our health and biodiversity (Windley, 2008) Genetically Modified Food contains increased levels of toxins, allergens and other harmful compounds. The crops have very high levels of herbicide deposits. The genetic mutations have led to more allergies. Research shows that an individual who was not allergic to soy plant was allergic to soy that was modified genetically. In animal studies, foods that are modified have an effect in the immune system and cause inflammation. It is also evident that in the long term there is a possibility of getting cancer which results from the alterations in the organisms. A lot of genetically modified food is produced by the use of genes such as markers that are antibiotic resistant. When these genes are transferred from human digestive tract to the cells, they could result into the development of antibiotic-resistant strains (Windley, 2008).
The foods in my supermarket that results from genetic recombination include fruits and vegetables. Papaya is a fruit that had been attacked by a virus known as ring spot virus which had put papaya industry at a great risk of closing down. To save the industry, papaya was modified in order to resist the harmful virus. This means that the highest percentage of papaya is genetically modified and this is what we find in our supermarkets (Chapman & Morris, 2009). Other types of genetically modified food found in our supermarkets are milled corn products such as grits, corn flour and corn meal. Others are milled soy products for example isolates of protein, soy flour and concentrates of protein (Chapman &Morris, 2009).
The regulation types that exist for these foods include regulation by type of organism. Under this type, an individual that desires to transport, import or release to the environment an article that is regulated should apply for a permit from APHIS. This kind of permit lay out restrictions on planting or transportation to avoid escape of any material that may pose a risk of pest to the environment (Berkey, 1999). The other type is regulation of products derived from transgenic organisms. The product’s properties determine how it will be regulated. For instance, if a product can cure an illness, then it would be regulated as a drug (Berkey, 1999)
In conclusion, although genetically modified foods have some benefits such as food security, their negative effects should also be considered. This will ensure that human beings and also other living organisms live in an environment that is risk-free.
Berkey, J. O. (1999). The Regulation of Genetically Modified Food. Retrieved from American Society of International Law. Web.
Butcher, M. (2009). Genetically Modified Food. Retrieved from Disabled world towards tomorrow. Web.
Dr. Windley, S. (2008). Genetically Modified Foods. Retrieved from PurehealthMD.com. Web.
GreenFacts. (2009). Genetically Modified Crops. Web.