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Genetically Modified Foods

Essay by   •  April 8, 2012  •  Essay  •  293 Words (2 Pages)  •  1,925 Views

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Genetically modified foods and food products have an interesting history and their development has experienced rapid growth over the last decade. However over the last decade, there have been many controversial issues and risks that genetically modified foods have shown. The controversy will however, continue for some time as well.

Before scientists had discovered genetic engineering in the 1800's, farmers found that you can cross breed plants from seeds saved from domesticated crops. Plants were manipulated through the use of yeast and fermentation. Some naturalists and farmers began to recognize hybrids. These were plants produced through natural breeding between related varieties of plants.

Tobacco was a genetically engineered product produced over a decade before the tomato. Tomatoes were one of the first to be genetically engineered. "In the earlier days of genetically modified foods, tomatoes were the first crop to be genetically engineered and grown commercially. The GM tomato crop was created to be resistant to the usual rotting and decay of a typical, conventional tomato that is not genetically modified." Calgene, was able to produce the tomatoes in the early to mid 1990s without any kind or sort of labels to indicate any difference from conventional and commercially grown tomatoes.

Genetically modified foods available through the past decade in U.S. markets include tomatoes, squash, yeast, corn, potatoes, and soybeans, which are used in most of all processed foods, such as bread, pasta, candies, ice cream, pies, biscuits, margarine, meat products and vegetarian meat substitutes. Genetically modified organisms are also used to produce cheeses and canola oil. But this is just the beginning. In a few years it may be almost impossible to find natural food. Assume that these new foods are not substantially different from existing foods and pose no special risks.



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