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Agriculture And Its Impact On The World

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1.0 Introduction

It is of no surprise that what we eat changes with time. Our food choices vary season-to-season, week-to-week, and day-to-day. They depend on where we travel, where we work, what we like and don’t like; how we live. But have you ever considered how food itself has changed over the years? How the same types of food we eat today vary from those eaten a century ago?
For thousands of years, humans have practiced the agricultural methods explained by Mendel in the mid-1800s; namely, cross-breeding and artificial selection. These “old” biotechnologies allowed the first domestic farmers to mate the strongest, most pest-resistant and fruitful plants in order to produce healthful foods in large quantities. The ability to
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GMOs are organisms that have been genetically altered to possess uncharacteristic traits and benefits. Genetically modified (GM) foods are powerful tools for the future of agriculture and human health; however, if not regulated carefully, they could be detrimental to the environment and society. Currently, GM foods comprise roughly 80% of the consumer market, with only 20% remaining for organics and all-natural products. Soy, canola, and corn are amongst the most popular and widespread of GMO food products in the world (NON-GMO Project 2015). A careful look into GMO agricultural practices and their effect on the environment, GM foods and their impact on human health, and legal factors surrounding the production of GM foods will lead us to understanding the implications of such technology and how it can be used to better the world we live in.

2.0 GM Agriculture and the Environment

GM crops are highly disputed amongst scientists, farmers, and environmentalists. The potential of GM crops to improve upon current agricultural methods by increasing agricultural productivity and improving pest resistance has been met by claims that GM crops increase herbicide usage and threaten biodiversity.

2.1 Agricultural Productivity
GMOs have the ability to greatly improve agricultural productivity. GM crops have proved to be effective in increasing the amount of crop that farmers can
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