Despite environmental organization and public interest groups’ effort against the chemically engineered food, the food has become famous and introduced into the market since 1996. The term is commonly used to refer to the food that is created using latest molecular biology techniques. The latest techniques use genetic information from one organism and modifying it into another organism. The result is food crops that stay fresher, grow bigger and that resists diseases as well as creating their own pesticide. However, measures should be taken control the dominance of the chemically engineered food in the market as it poses a threat to human health, environment and the economy globally.
Drought resistant gene responsible for drought tolerance may be inserted to a plant from another, making a genetically modified plant gain drought tolerance as well. Other genes may be transferred from non-plant organism resulting to a genetically modified or chemically engineered food. Suzanne Wuerthele, a technologist at an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), once said that this invention is among the best as people from all over the world may accept. Her words express the significance of the genetic engineering that results in the production of chemically engineered food that is different from the traditional variety.
A common method in chemically engineered food is the method of gene splicing, where strings of DNA are cut selecting the genes that are required. This method has enabled scientists to produce slow ripening seedless fruits that grow in unfavorable conditions resisting attacks from diseases. The method has also created plants that have adapted to grow in salty and dry or frosty environments (Forman 91).
Today we eat foods that contain genetically modified ingredients even without knowing that. The essay Genetically Modified Food, submitted by antiessayus, states that “our everyday meal contains so many kinds of foods, and we do not know half of their origins, or contents. Many foods are genetically modified or altered to make it tastier, or long lasting.” Despite criticism from public interest groups, the players in the process of chemically engineering food argue that the activity ensures and sustains food security in the populated world. They argue that the process also increases food production. However, chemically engineered food remains an expensive process that would not be afforded by the developing nations. Corporations have used this plight of the developing world and countries as a marketing strategy enabling them gain acceptance and dependency upon the chemically engineered food.
Regardless of the potential benefits of chemically engineered food being exciting, there exists real concerns on biodiversity, ecosystem and people’s health and safety, if the food is not tested properly proving to be safe for consumption. Chemically engineered food has effects and impacts that are categorized into environmental hazards, human health risks and global economic concerns. The essay, Genetically Modified Food, stated that the public has a mixed reaction towards the combination of DNA in genetic engineering. In short, biotech crop has had a significant impact, especially in dealing with hunger strains in third world countries (Evenson 75).
Chemically engineered food causes an environmental hazard. The food causes high mortality rate by causing unintended harm to other organisms. The genetically engineered plants may produce toxins that can kill insects’ larvae. Some insects and pests will become resistant to the toxins and pesticides that genetically modified crops produce. However, these hazards may be prevented by genetically modifying male sterile that will not produce pollen, and by creating buffer zones, where chemically engineered food will be isolated from other organisms.
Chemically engineered food causes a health risk to human. The food causes many people to develop health risky allergies. The newly introduced genes during the process of genetic modification may be the cause of developing an allergic reaction in vulnerable human beings. An article published in Lancet also examined effects of the chemically engineered food and proved that it cases unknown effects on human beings.
Lack of adequate testing on genes that perform useful functions in an unrelated species could be dangerous. The testing proves that the crop grows, but does not put emphasis on the test for effects and safety. As much as it may seem to be a solution to various issues affecting people from all parts of the globe, there are limitations associated with this technique. Chemically engineered food also has a threat on the global economy. The process is costly in terms of finances and time. New technologies on food engineering have resulted in production of high priced seeds that farmers in the developing nations cannot afford to purchase.
Supporters in producing chemically engineered food have continually received recognition in their activities despite the criticism against the food. One main reason is as a result of the money that is involved in the process and activities of chemically engineered food. Pest resistant crops are more favorable (Ruse & David 93). Solving world hunger is another significant theme of supporters of chemically engineered food who argue that increased production in recent years is a result of revolution in food production industry. World governments are establishing regulatory procedures that monitor the effects and approving the research and production of new genetically modified food.
Processes and information based on chemically engineered food have the potential in the world hunger elimination and solving malnutrition problems. The technology has increased the yield and reduced the overdependence on chemical pesticides. The potential benefits make technology on chemically engineering food an inevitable wave that cannot be ignored. However, the process must be approached with caution to eliminate unintended harm to health of human and environment.