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Biotechnology, a Solution to World Hunger and Malnutrition

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Biotechnology, a solution to World Hunger and Malnutrition

Yousef Khalid 370

Bassam AlAssal

GBIO 100 Sec.No. 01 Fall 18-19

The main focus of this paper is to shed light on how to end world hunger as it is one of the most dramatic problems currently affecting several areas of the entire world. According to Concern USA organization there are over 18 countries currently affected by this problem including Zambia, Madagascar, Haiti, Sudan and many others. Now while some argue that world hunger is simply nothing but a misdistribution of resources and that there is enough food going around to feed everyone, others believe that there is definitely a shortage of food. However, with advancements in technology and science Biotechnology has offered a solution to this issue.

Among the various potential biotechnological practices which are available and the variety of ways in which they can be applied, Genetically Modified Crops demand a lot of attention. As such genetically modified crops contain genes from various species which could possibly solve the world food shortages or make them less severe than they already are. While the general public is yet to fully welcome the use of GM crops there are still many questions surrounding the actual benefits of the crops and whether or not they serve their stated purpose without causing any harm.

There are multiple Genetic modification techniques that can be used on crops, which could serve a great deal towards this issue one of them is the Simple Selection method. This is one of the easiest methods of plant genetic modifications which is basically inspecting a large population of heterogenous plants to select the most superior of them. Meaning, the plants or crops with the most desired traits such as plants with higher yields and most ripe. The seeds of such plants will then be taken and under laboratory conditions will multiply until over a period of several years these seeds will be fully grown and ready to harvest.

There are approximately 145 million children in 118 different countries that belong to low income groups, specifically in South east Asia and Africa which are lacking in Vitamin A, this has caused serious malnutrition issues in the world casuing almost 300,000 children to lose their eyesight every year. To fight this problem researchers were able to create what they call Golden Rice, which is also a genetically modified crop that has been engineered to carry three different genes essential towards high yield and the secretion of ProVitamin A.

Biotechnology creates tremendous possibilities in the developing world. The use of disease resistant, pest resistant and high yielding crops will create a huge positive impact on world hunger and malnutrition. GM crops also have the possibility to produce more amounts of yield on less land, which can improve the overall productivity and help less developed countries sustain their selves to reduce world hunger. According to research it is estimated that the implementation of genetically engineered crops on 10% of farm lands in each developing country will actually end world hunger by 2022.

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