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Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Genetically Modified Crop

Tomato was among top GMC in the world today...

Do you know about GMC?

GMC or Genetically Modified Crop is a plants contain a gene(s) that has been artificially inserted instead of a plant acquiring it through pollination as a natural process. The inserted gene(s) known as trans gene may come from another unrelated plant or from a completely different species. As a result plant is said to be "Genetically modified" although in reality all crops have been genetically modified from their original wild state by domestication thousand years ago by selection and plant breeding process. That was I heard and read through many sources and searching through websites. This article is for general information to readers those interested in GMC. Malaysia yet to promote, adapt, study and develop this technology.

People nowadays believe that GM Crops was made through a process known as Genetic Engineering. It involves the a device called a 'gene gun' to shot genes into a tiny DNA cells. The other method is using certain bacterium to introduce genes of interest into plant DNA. But why the scientist and many other int rested parties doing this GMC?...This may due to the benefit of GMC such as Higher crop harvest, Reduce farm costs , Increased farm profit and improvement the environment. Of course the develop nation needs this GMC to provide food for huge world population reaching about 6.78 billion next year! They are able to produce more yield from GMC crop such as Tomato in which are able to reach 80 mt/ha under Greenhouse at Netherlands using GMC seeds compare to only less than 20 mt/ha in Malaysia using non-GMC Seedling under Rain shed Shelter in Cameroon Highland.

People also ask what are the risks of GMC? ..Of course every new emerging technology are having potential risks. Many extremist said it will bring danger to unintentionally introducing allergens and other anti nutrition of food. The likely hood of trans genes also may escape from cultivated crops into wild relatives. There is possibility also that the transgenic crop carrying antibiotic genes that may generate antibiotic resistance in livestock or human. Do you ever heard of Mad Cow Disease, JE Nipah of Swine, Avian Flu, Increase of human heart problem? Was It may be the effect of GMC, who knows!. The risk may affect the potential of new pests to evolve resistance and the risks of this toxins affecting non-target pests. New pesticide to control new pathogen yet to suit the GMC planting materials.

Where the legislation and regulatory institutions are in places, there are elaborate steps to precisely avoid mitigate these risks. Every nation has to protect their citizen and human right towards food safety, friendly environment, enough food supply and healthy conscious. There are also those risks that are neither caused by preventable by technology itself. As an example, as I guest is the type of risks in further widening of the economic gap between developed countries (That produce a lot of food Product with GMC in small area) versus Under develop or developing nation with poor resources and technology.

Can I ask now who actually lead the GMC in the world? Of course it was developed nation in North America and Europe. Other developing countries now just want to start their research about GMC. Such name like Aventis, Dow Agrosciences, Dupont/ Pioneer, Mosanto Pharmacia, Upjohn, Novaratis and Astra-Zeneca are those involves with GMC recently. There are report about GMC crop grown from only 1.7 million hectare in 1996 ha increase to 11 million hectare in 1997 and about 43 million hectare in 2000 and today how many hectare already using GMC?

I feel that despite the current uncertainty over GM Crop, one thing remain clear. This technology with its potential is to create economically important crop varieties is simply to valuable if we ignore. Some valid concerns in technology, legislation, food safety, environments, world food supply and other important factors should improved. Scientists, political leaders, administrators, farmers, producers, marketing agents, extension agents, consumers and all parties are here to read and understand about Genetic Modified Crop...


M Anem
Organic Food Eater

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