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Argumentative Essay

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Professor Marvin

English 102


Argumentative Essay

        The use of genetically modified organisms is subject to much debate. Some researchers claim there are various benefits associated with the use of GMO’s, while others vehemently contest that claim. Those in favor of GMO’s argue the use of GM crops creates a reduction of food prices, and combats world hunger. GMO critics insist the consumption of GM foods clearly creates health hazards, and crops also pose risks to the environment. These crops pose risks to the environment, too. Although both sides present valid points to support their views, the GMO skeptics certainly have a stronger argument.

        Supporters of genetically modified foods maintain they are safe and offer numerous benefits. They also contend the genetic engineering of crops is a means to end world hunger, for these crops boost harvests because they are protected against pests, weeds, and drought. In light of the growing world population, these hardy crops will prevent starvation (Text 3, Lines 18-22). Additionally, one of the most common genetic modifications is introducing a bacteria gene that gives plants the ability to produce their own insecticides. This allows farmers to use fewer pesticides. Similarly, GM crops eventually become tolerant to high doses of herbicides. When herbicides are sprayed to kill weeds, the plant can still survive (Text 1, Lines 5-8).

        Those in opposition to the use of GMO’s argue there has been an insufficient amount of testing done on the subject and are concerned about the health risks associated with the consumption of GM foods. The production of foods that have never appeared in nature run the risk of creating new toxins and allergens (Text 2, Lines 6-7). An additional drawback to genetically modified crops is the environmental harm it generates. There is an acute danger of GM seeds contaminating the fields of farmers who have not implemented genetic modification (Text 2, Lines 27-29).  In reality, the only ones who benefit from GM foods are the chemical companies that produce them. Consumer benefits are non-existent; GMO products do not taste better; nor are they cheaper, and their nutrition might even be inferior. There is major controversy in regard to genetically modified organisms, yet GMO critics certainly present more legitimate arguments.

        Genetic modification is a very controversial issue. An abundance of health issues arise with the consumption of genetically modified food. These include: infertility; immune system problems; accelerated aging; disruption of insulin and cholesterol regulation; gastrointestinal issues; and changes in organs (Text 2, Lines 21-23). This argument is particularly convincing since people usually take health matters seriously. GM crops can also pose risks to the environment. It is impossible for people to live completely GMO free since even non-GMO seeds may become inadvertently contaminated through crosspollination. Those who want to eat only organic products are hindered from doing so (Text 1, Lines 46-51). Another significant point to consider is the fact that consumers cannot request a less risky version of the product at the same price. Biotech companies deliberately do not label GM foods for this reason (Text 2, Lines 45-46). It is a consumer right to know what is in the products being purchased and to make informed decisions.



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