AP Biology Period 6
Grains of Hope Article Summary
The research advances made over the past twenty years have moved genetic engineering and biotechnology onto the American and world landscapes. The public has long accepted new technology as being beneficial without much challenge. There is a growing understanding that new technologies have costs, risks, and benefits associated that are not necessarily distributed evenly across the population. This article is about the golden rice and the battle to help it get sold to underdeveloped countries.
In November 2000, funding was increased to the U.S. Agency for International Development to use genetic engineering and biotechnology to battle hunger in developing nations. Biotech crops have been grown in the United States since 1996 and currently account for one-half of the nation's soybean crop production. Through genetic research, corn varieties are producing a product that is more disease resistant and more pest resistant, thus potentially lowering the need to use chemicals. The understanding of genetics allows crops like rice to be altered to include Vitamin A, a boon to undernourished children in the developing world. The issue is the acceptability and cultural values of genetically altered foods. This article raises many questions about the moral and ethical nature of biological engineering and genetically modifying organisms for human benefit even if it may be for the greater good. It also raised…