GM crops are huge at the moment, and the noticeable 'counter movement' is for people to continue to purchase organic foods (please note I am specifically talking of GM crops and not meats, etc).

The argument as fair as I am aware is that some of the GM crops actually contain poisons to the human digestive system that cannot be broken down, and we have yet to find out their effects on long term health.

However, my question is: What can be achieved, if anything at all, in terms of creating GM crops which do not incur health issues? Is there a specific way of going about this?

  • Could crops be made larger?
  • Could crops become more pest-resistant?
  • Could a 'uniform shape' be created?
  • Would this be done with genes from other plants? Or artificially?

Thank you for your time.

  • $\begingroup$ Yes, yes, ...maybe, yes. What do you mean by "artificially"? I don't think this question is opinion based. It's just unclear at the moment. Perhaps read a specific example in which GM crops have been used to enhance yield and come back with some more targeted questions. $\endgroup$
    – James
    Mar 2 '16 at 4:36
  • $\begingroup$ The "poisons" used in GM crops affects insects and not humans. This can pose an ecological problem but there are no known health issues. Many other GM crops are engineered to have longer shelf life and higher nutritive value. Your question has few issues: 1.You are assuming that all GM crops have the poisonous insecticidal protein. 2.You are assuming that this is actually toxic to humans. 3.You are asking multiple questions about how to make safe GM crops. For first two issues you should support these claims/hypotheses with some reference. And, you should ask a single precise question. $\endgroup$
    Mar 2 '16 at 5:30

Welcome to Biology.SE.

What are GMOs?

The term 'GMO' can mean a vast array of different things and there is no objective way to distinguish what most people would call GMOs from what most peopel would not call GMOs. Humans have made 'GMO' for thousands (or even tens of thousands) of years. The detailed definition of 'GMO' will not impact the answer to the question Are GMOs safe to eat?.

Are GMOs safe to eat?

Yes, GMOs are safe to eat. There is no health risk when eating GMOs. Every scientist agree on that. Arguments saying that GMOs cause health risks have no foundation and are not based on evidence. Have a look at the Skeptics.StackExchange.com > Is Genetically Modified food safe to consume?.

Note that I am not saying that there is no discussion or debate to have around GMOs. I am only saying that these discussions have no reason to be around health risks for the consumer.

Your questions

Could crops be made larger?

Yes. We already did that.

Could crops become more pest-resistant?

Yes. We already did that.

Could a 'uniform shape' be created?

I do not understand what you mean.

Would this be done with genes from other plants? Or artificially?

The term 'artificially' has no good definition and it makes your question unclear. Most would consider pretty 'artificial' to take a gene from a species and insert it into another species (even though it occurs in nature).


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