Tag Archives: GMOs

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A Brief History of GMOs

GMO history

Most of you probably think genetic engineering is a byproduct of the modern era, as an attempt for mankind to conquer nature. On the contrary, they have been around for thousands of years. However, it is not until recently that GMOs have proliferated and became an integral part of modern agriculture. 

Recent History and Proliferation

corn fieldSince the discovery of the DNA, scientists have conducted extensive studies and attempts at genetic modifications of living organism. The first patent was issued to General Electric some 35 years ago in 1980 for a modified bacterium that transformed spill cleanup efforts by gobbling up crude oil. Pretty neat stuff right? A couple years later, Genentech successfully produced human insulin by inserting human genome into E.Coli. It was considered a monumental breakthrough at the time.

Tomatoes were the first crops to be tested commercially. In 1994, the U.S. Department of Agriculture approved the first ever grown genetically modified crop to the market: Calgene’s Flavr Savr tomatoes. Designed to ripen slower and remain firm for longer periods than it’s competition, it became an overnight sensation. By 1995, a staggering 67% of cheese produced in the U.S. was being made from cows treated with some form of growth hormones.

Experts say that 60-70% of all produce in your local grocery store contains some form of genetic modification. “In 2014, GMO crops made up 94 percent of US soybean acreage, 93 percent of all corn planted, and 96 percent of all cotton.” The FDA stands firm on its decision allowing GMO products to remain unlabeled while the European Union imposed a complete ban for such products.

Now What?

vegetablesFor the average consumer, there are few resources that provide unbiased opinions on the subject matter. Long-term effects of GMOs are still unknown to the human body. With little to no regulation, it is nearly impossible for consumers to differentiate natural and modified products. For those who have space, a growing number of people opted to grow and harvest their own food as a method of monitoring exactly what goes into their body. Luckily, there is now a market for indoor gardens, like Droponic, that allows anyone to grow their own indoor garden and be confident about what they’re consuming.

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GMOs: Are They Really Good For Us?

GMOs, or genetically modified organisms, seems so be all the rage these days. But what exactly are they? Are they bad or good for our health? As we dig deeper into this topic, it turns out that everything is not as black and white as we perceive. GMO

What are they?

GMOs are living organisms whose genetic material has been modified through various means of genetic engineering. Genes are artificially manipulated and selected to ensure that only specific and desirable traits are carried on. Currently, there are no federal laws in the US that require food manufacturers to label GM foods.

The Good News

GMO2Even with all the bad press, there are beneficial side effects to growing GM foods. These foods are usually modified to be resistant against weeds and pests so reduces the need for herbicides and pesticides. This means that there are less chemicals and non-natural substances that are being consumed by eating GM foods. The modifications usually associated with GM foods often calls for higher yields and therefore increases food production. GM foods require less tillage and plowing, thus reducing carbon emissions and greenhouse gases. There are multiple cases where GM foods can produce more food in less space, and can therefore more adequately feed a rapidly growing population. The modified foods can also have an increase in desirable components such as nutrients.

Not So Good News

Although GMOs are manipulated to only produce desirable traits, its effect on the human body is still largely unknown, controversial, and debated. GMOs are created with the mindset of increasing food production and profit margins. Compared to its natural counterparts, GMOs usually grow exponentially faster and requires less maintenance. However, it is neagmo-veggiesrly impossible for the average consumer to choose whether a product contains GMO as there are no laws requiring such labels on foods in the US. Whatever your feelings towards GMOs are, the only sure fire way to know is to grow your own food. With Droponic, starting and maintaining your very own indoor garden is a breeze. Be in charge of your food today!

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