Discuss modified advantage and disadvantages associated with the GM crops?


 Discuss the advantages and disadvantages associated with the GM crops?

Ans. Genetically modified crops are plants used in agriculture, the DNA of which has been modified using genetic engineering methods.

Generally, GM Crops are of 3 types:

■ Transgenic plants have genes inserted into them that are derived from other species. Eg. Bt Cotton, Bt Brinjal.

■ Cisgenic plants are made using genes of the same species or closely related.

■ Nontransgenic plants alter genetic makeup of a plant without incorporating genes from other plants.

Advantages of the GM Crops:

☆■ GM crops provide better resistance to disease, pest, insects and herbicides.

☆■The nutritional content of the crops can be altered. Golden Rice is genetically modified to add beta carotene which helps to reduce Vitamin A deficiency.

 ■ GM crops can increase productivity, ensuring global food security.

■  Such crops will help in overcoming the challenges of climate change in agriculture.
☆■ They can also offer better income opportunities, thus helping in doubling the farmers income.

Challenges associated with GM Crops:

The negative impact of GM crops like GM mustard on health is still unknown.

■ Genetic modification can cause allergic reactions to humans.

■ Such crops also carry the risk of affecting biodiversity negatively.

■ They also carry ethical concerns like violation of natural organisms' intrinsic value.

Even though GM crops hold the hope for the future in view of climate change, food security, poverty, hunger, malnutrition etc. they are still riddled with concerns regarding their impact on environment and human health.

Countries like USA, Argentina, and Philippines have given some degree of approval to commercial cultivation of GM Crops. India also needs to put in place a proper mechanism for research, field trials and clearance of GM crops to reap their potential benefits for future.

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