Genetically Modified (GM) Foods
What is genetically modified foods or GM foods?
By using genetic engineering, some plants genetic materials (DNA) are altered in an artificial way which does not exists naturally. This type of plants are used to produce GM foods or genetically modified foods. GM foods have both positive and negative impacts.
Genetically modified food's DNA is modified with desired quality and characteristics. Several conventional breading are used to produce GM foods. All GM foods are produced form natural plants.
GM foods were first served at 1990s. Most GM foods are derived from natural plants like corn, soybean etc.
Suppose, one type of GM food is "Golden Rice". People grows white rice for food. The amount of vitamin A (Beta-carotene) in white rice is not much. So, for high amounts of Vitamin A in rice, this white rice's DNA or genes can be modified. So, by implementing three types genes (two genes from daffodils and the other on from bacterium) the white rice is modified and a new rice is produced which contains high amounts of vitamin A. So, if human takes Golden Rice then the need for vitamin A of human body can easily resolved.
White Rice vs Golden Rice
World's first commercial GM food
"Flavr Savr" was th world's first commercially GM food which was in fact tomato. It was sold into market in '94. One characteristics of tomato is that it rots easily. To resistant this characteristics, "Calgene", a Californian company, produces Flavr Savr (tomato's GM food name) and sold tomato to open market.
Some of the world's GM foods
All GM foods are not approved for commercial sales. They needs labeling or long term safety tests. Some of the approved commercial GM foods are:
- Canola Oil (rapeseed oil)
- Chicory,red hearted (Radicchio)
There are other types of GM foods which are not yet approved for commercial sales. Some of them are:
- Alpo Dry Pet Food
- Bravos Tortilla Chips
- Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix
- Light Life Gimme Lean
- Morning Star Farms Better'n Burgers
- Quick Loaf Bread Mix