The Instigator
BenJWasson
Pro (for)
Winning
2 Points
The Contender
Prelaw
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

Genetically Modified Foods do more good than harm.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
BenJWasson
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/29/2016 Category: Technology
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 588 times Debate No: 85745
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (2)
Votes (2)

 

BenJWasson

Pro

First round is for acceptance only. No new arguments in the final rounds. No forfeiting. Thank you.
Prelaw

Con

I accept the challenge. I would like to say good luck to my opponent.
Debate Round No. 1
BenJWasson

Pro

The criterion for this debate is net benefits. This means I win this debate if I prove that the net benefits of GM Foods outweigh the disadvantages mentioned by the Con side.

I will start with two points.

The first of these is that GM Foods (or genetically modified foods) are completely safe and healthy.
According to Battelle, the world"s largest nonprofit research and development organization, In the United States, GM food products must be rigorously tested before they can be sold"far more so than conventionally bred crops. The testing process can take 7-10 years, and must include evaluations of potential risks to humans and livestock as well as potential risks to wildlife and the environment.

Part of the testing includes nutritional analysis and protein analysis and characterization. In these studies, researches look at the proteins and peptides expressed in the bioengineered organism compared to the original. This allows researchers to identify any new proteins created by the GM crop that could produce an allergic reaction or other adverse effect. In fact, GMOs are among the most tested products in history, partly due to a study we will talk about soon.

Based on this information, GM Foods are completely safe and even more healthy than regular, but I will take it even further to say that GMOs are among the highest tested things of all time. This is mainly due to a study claimed by Forbes to be the most comprehensive study on GMOs and foods of all time. University of California-Davis Department of Animal Science geneticist Alison Van Eenennaam and research assistant Amy E. Young reviewed 29 years of livestock productivity and health data from both before and after the introduction of genetically engineered animal feed.

The field data represented more than 100 billion animals covering a period before 1996 when animal feed was 100% non-GMO, and after its introduction when it jumped to 90% and more GMO. The documentation included the records of animals examined pre and post mortem, as ill cattle cannot be approved for meat.

What did they find? That GM feed is safe and nutritionally equivalent to non-GMO feed. There was no indication of any unusual trends in the health of animals since 1996 when GMO crops were first harvested. Considering the size of the dataset, it can reasonably be said that the debate over the impact of GM feed on animal health (including humans) is closed.

Moving on to my second point, which is GM Foods can help to solve starvation.
One in eight people among the world"s growing population of seven billion do not have enough to eat, and safe and effective methods of food production, like crops produced through GM technology, can help us feed the hungry and malnourished in developing nations around the world. There are multiple different ways that the GMO technology can help solve world hunger.

One of these ways is by increasing crop yield. This basically means that you get more crops than usual. Three pioneers in the controversial field of genetically modified crops have won the prestigious World Food Prize, known as the "Nobel Prize for agriculture." The award credits the technology they created with increasing the quantity and availability of food, and providing a tool to help meet the challenges of a growing population and a changing climate. With the world expected to add another 2 billion people by 2050, demand for food and clothing will increase by at least 60 percent. And biotech crops will help, said U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, announcing the winners.

"It is simply true that biotechnology has dramatically increased crop yields. It has drastically decreased loss due to pests and disease, and it allows us to feed more people without converting tropical forests or fragile lands in order to do so," Kerry said.

Another way that GMO tech can help solve world hunger is by decreasing the price of food (of course, mostly due to the higher crop yield). According to the World Food Programme, The poorest households in the developing world may spend as much as 60-80 percent of their incomes on food. The World Food Programme also notes that when prices go up, they must spend even more of their meager resources on food. That means they have less for their other needs, such as clothes, shelter, medicines, school books for the children. And little by little, non-essentials get cut. This means that eventually, a family can be left with nothing - no education, no clean clothes, no medicine, and more. One of the best ways of helping the poor avoid the worst effects of food price hikes is through so-called "safety nets" " reliable systems providing food to the most vulnerable when times are hard. These safety nets can be created by the huge crop yield that is being created by the genetic modification of crops.

Even Julie Borlaug, granddaughter of Nobel Peace prize laureate and father of the Green Revolution Dr. Norman Borlaug, and associate director for external relations at the Normal Borlaug Institute for International Agriculture, says that her grandfather was a strong proponent of science and biotechnology as "weapons in the fight against world hunger." She urges everyone to help "educate and inform the public" about about the need for continued scientific and biotechnological advances in agriculture to feed a growing world population.

Based on the information shared within these two points, GM Foods are very valuable and are not at a concern with health at all. Thank you.
Prelaw

Con

First I feel a thank you is in order for my opponent for presenting an interesting and fascinating argument.

Now I would like to move to the point of Safety and Health concerning GM foods. I will start by pointing the issue of food allergies. If the novel protein in a GM food comes from a source that is known to cause allergies in humans or a source of that has never been consumed as human food. the concern that the protein could elicit an immune response in humans increases. (http://enhs.umn.edu...). Another issue concerning food allergies is this, certain proteins cause more allergic reactions than others, people with severe allergies know what foods to avoid. If genes from those foods are introduced into others without appropriate labeling to warn those with allergies, allergic reactions could occur. The introduction of genetic material from Brazil nuts into soybeans was shelved for this reason. (http://www.livestrong.com...).

Continuing on the subject of Health and safety I would like to take a look at antibiotics. Antibiotic resistance is attributed to HGT (Horizontal Gene Transfer). Antibiotics are used in early stages of genetic modification from HGT to eliminate chances of bacterial mutation and antibiotic resistant. A study was done by Indiana State University and University of California San Diego found that hospitals observed decreased the effectiveness of antibiotic drugs Hug (2008) found antibiotic resistance could be due to the HGT of GM crops via the transformation of bacteria in the food chain. Being exposed to the production or consumption GM crops can decrease antibiotic efficiency. Antibiotic markers persist in the body and can make antibiotic medications less effective. The amount of DNA experiencing HGTs is between 0.1 and 1g per day. About 20% of GM crops create new viral strains with unknown properties (positive or negative). (http://sphweb.bumc.bu.edu...). Now I would like to say that GM Foods are not 100% percent safe or healthy.
Debate Round No. 2
BenJWasson

Pro

I would first like to thank my opponent for his compliments and his case.

My opponent has mentioned that genetically modified foods are not 100% safe or healthy. While this may be true, are we sure that anything is completely safe and healthy? Many things, such as cars, cigarettes, or even the common lightbulb can have repercussions, sometimes even fatal (car accidents, lung cancer, fires). Like previously mentioned by me, GMOs and Genetically Modified Food are among the top in research, meaning that they are extremely safe, and much safer than many other things we have accepted into our life. Sure, we can't prove that GM Foods are 100% safe and healthy, but with a risk that small, it would be very much worth it if we can feed those in poverty, helping those in need and essentially making the world a better place. For this reason, I urge all of you to vote Pro.

Again, thank you to my opponent, I hope to see your next argument.
Prelaw

Con

Prelaw forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
BenJWasson

Pro

My opponent has forfeited, therefore, I have won, by the rules stated in my first round. Thank you. Vote Pro.
Prelaw

Con

Prelaw forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by Citizen_of_the_Web 1 year ago
Citizen_of_the_Web
In what terms? Economically or Health-wise? Or both?
Posted by Troller808 1 year ago
Troller808
I would challenge you but i noticed you took the side i would be on.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by U.n 1 year ago
U.n
BenJWassonPrelawTied
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Total points awarded:10 
Reasons for voting decision: Con forfeited two rounds.
Vote Placed by lannan13 1 year ago
lannan13
BenJWassonPrelawTied
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Total points awarded:10 
Reasons for voting decision: Forfeiture