Use Of Genetically Modified Crops Essay, Research Paper
= ?The study of the moral value of human conduct and the rules and
principles that govern it?1. Moral values of a certain topic can vary between
different people, this often leads to conflict. This has happened to the
Genetically Modified (GM) foods debate. The definition of Genetically modified foods from
the EC novel foods regulation is ?a food which is, or which is made from,
a genetically modified organism?containing genetic material or protein
resulting from the modification?17. Society has to decide what is deemed to be right and
the power to say where it is also wrong in a particular case. ?Ethical
decisions involve weighing up risks against the benefits?1.
The morals of an individual rely on their ?feeling rather than facts?1
of a situation. Areas of
discussion The views of the
general public on GM foods The role of the media
in the GM debate Scientific findings and
conclusions about GM foods and companies which are pro-GM 1.
The views of the general public on GM foods There
has always been great opposition to the idea of ?Frankenstein foods?2
by the public. This is greatly due to the public not understanding what a GM
crop consists of. The majority of people don?t like the idea of GM crops
because of many reasons. Some people think that the biotechnology companies are
in the business purely for money, ?It?ll make the rich people a lot
richer?a disgraceful way to make money?3. Other people are ?not
happy to eat them unless a lot more testing is done on them?4.
Religious groups feel very strongly about GM foods, they want nature to run
without human interference and also the feeling that ?you shouldn?t mess
with what God designed, humans aren?t the creator?5.? Not all of the public have the view that ?people
do not want its[the department of environment] food?6, there
are also some neutral feelings about GM foods that adopt the ?if you can?t beat
?em, join ?em? approach as they realize that they have ?probably been
eating them for years?7, which is true because sources have
shown that ?It is very likely that you have eaten food with at least
traces of GM ingredients?8. Clearly the majority is against the widespread
production and introduction of GM foods into our society. Friends of the earth,
(bearing in mind their biased view on the GM debate) believe that ?It
seems that the only people not convinced by the arguments against GM food are
the government and the GM food industry themselves?9. Aside
from the hype from Biased environmental companies there are still genuine
reasons for opposing GM foods. Two of the main fears of GM food technology are
?it will make people ill and?it will damage the earth?s fragile
eco-system?the scientific evidence on these two issues is inconclusive?10.
Scientists are now able to produce crops that are ?herbicide
tolerant?insect resistant?virus resistant?16. This is a
benefit as it enables the farmer to spray herbicide over crops without the
important crops being damaged. The public have fears against this because it is
thought that the ?herbicide-resistant crops will ?sterilise? fields
leaving them empty of plants for birds and insects to feed on?18.Although the public approve of GM sources to be used
in medicine, as a survey shows that ?74% of parents in England would let
their child undergo gene therapy?1, the public still don?t
want to eat it.??? 2.
The role of the media in the GM debate The
public seem to be swayed by television, radio and newspaper articles about GM
crops. ?Before spring 1999 there were very few media articles about GM?1.
There now seems to be an article in every other newspaper about it. The
newspapers can now ?name and shame? test site of GM crops. This could lead
Greenpeace activists to destroy the sites like 26 July 1999 when 28 people made
a ?dawn raid on a six-acre GM maize crop?11. Media can
be to blame for the hype surrounding GM crops. This is because ethics rather
than facts were emphasised as main points in many articles. The media plays a
key role in every aspect of the GM debate. Some papers perceive things in
different ways. An example of this is a Telegraph headline reads ?Mr.
Blair says ?I eat GM food and it is safe??1, whilst the
mirror reports on the same story reads ?Fury as the Prime Monster says ?I
eat Frankenstein food and it is safe??1. ????????? The government use the media to
portray their messages across the nation. These include reassurances that GM is
good and to ?keep an open mind?It[GM] has the potential to deliver real
benefits to people.?12. 3.
Scientific findings and conclusions about GM foods and companies that are
are 3 government departments and 7 advisory committees involved?the threat to
birds was not picked up by any of them?13. The GM companies
have backing from the government. The government are currently conducting
trials on various farms around the countries. This is good because ?we
need more research, not less?14 and ?If we are not
allowed to do experimental trials on GM crops, we shall never know the bad
things or good things about them?14. ????????? The scientific findings of GM foods
seem to be somewhat inconclusive. ?Scientists do not know all the answers
and should not claim to.?14. Scientist have found ?no
current evidence to suggest that the GM technologies used to produce food are
inherently harmful?15. Analysts have come up with possible
health effects towards humans these hazards include ?the inserted gene
may?produce an allergic reaction?. It may alter the way genes express
themselves?. Consumption?may alter the balance of existing micro-organisms in
the human gut?19.Summary There
are two extreme views about GM crops.?
The positive view taken by the government and the GM companies. There is
also the stronger negative view held by the media, the public and environmental
awareness companies. ????????? Can the modified foods produce
solutions to hunger, or are the GM companies just trying to make even more
money? We will never know. ????????? The main fact is that GM foods are not
wanted in this society, but we don?t have much choice as we are already eating
the modified Soya and maize, this is not helped by poor labelling of products. ????????? My view remains fairly neutral, that
there is no point fussing about the choice of our foods in the supermarkets and
to think about others that are less fortunate than ourselves. The promises made
by the super rich GM companies to try and combat this problem don?t seem to be
working so they should just let nature do its thing. We have survived until now
without GM products so there is no great need for them. The
public don?t have a great choice on this subject, even if it is against their
morals and principles. It is the people in power who make the decisions.??? References 1).Ethics
in biotechnology, 1. What is ethics?, www.gre.ac.uk/~ws02/GM_foods/ethnic.html2).A
mirror newspaper headline adapted from ?Ethics in biotechnology?
interviewee who wished not to be named, BBC online-GM foods, what people think,
8th October 1999.4).Abbie
Redland, BBC online-GM foods, what people think, 8th October 1999.5).Andrew
Parker BBC online-GM foods, what people think, 8th October 1999.6).?GM
food protests?, Thursday September 21 2000 the guardian newspaper7).George,
BBC online-GM foods, what people think, 8th October 1999.8).Am
I eating GM foods?? BBC online-GM foods,
8th October 1999.9).
What can you do? www.foe.co.uk/food_and_biotechnology/gm_food/ 10).
Is GM food harmful? BBC online-GM foods, 8th October 1999.11).
?GM food protests? Thursday September 21, 2000 the guardian newspaper12).
Message from the ministers ? www.gm-info.gov.uk/1999/message.htm
- official government GM website.13).
?Government failure? ? national campaigns/ briefings ? www.foe.co.uk 14).
?They were wrong?, Sunday September 24, 2000 the guardian newspaper.15).
Paragraph 7, ?Health implications of genetically modified foods? Professor Liam
Donaldson and Sir Robert May, May 199916).
Paragraph 8, uses of Genetic modification ?Health implications of genetically
modified foods? Professor Liam Donaldson and Sir Robert May, May 199917).
Paragraph 11, uses of Genetic modification ?Health implications of genetically
modified foods? Professor Liam Donaldson and Sir Robert May, May 199918).
?Real food? – www.foe.co.uk/food_and_biotechnology/gm_food/ 19).
Paragraph 26, ?Health implications of genetically modified foods? Professor
Liam Donaldson and Sir Robert May, May 1999.