GM technology is one of the technologies that has advanced significantly in the United States throughout the years. The application of genetic engineering concepts in the creation of modified organisms is referred to as GM technology. Scientists have been able to alter the genetics of species, particularly animals and plants, using genetic engineering techniques to produce those with desirable qualities. GM technology, which is primarily used in biological research, has made significant advances in agriculture, particularly in agricultural production increases. However, because of the controversy surrounding the concept of genetically modified foods, the government rushed to implement rules aimed at regulating the development of GM foods via genetic engineering. In this paper, the background and benefits of the technology, current policies and the future of GM technology are explored.

Genetic Engineering in Agriculture

Genetic engineering entails the process of manipulating the genes of organisms to create superior organisms. The technology has applications in the crops and animals. The use of the technology is mainly concerned about improving yields as well as ensuring that the crops produced mature faster, resist pests and has enhanced nutritional profile. Livestock has also been improved through genetic engineering by the insertion of genes that confer desirable attributes such as faster maturity, improved nutrient profile and disease resistance among other attributes that are preferred by farmers (Engel, Frenzel, and Miller 330). The application of the GM technology is helpful in ensuring food security in a country, hence the improvement of the well-being of the people.

Regulation of GM Technology

Due to the controversies surrounding the application of the GM technology, especially in the production of food, the government implemented policies aimed at regulating its use. Some people believe that GMO foods are not safe for human consumption, a fact that inspired the regulation of the technology's use. The regulation of the GM technology is spread among three government agencies in the United States. The agencies are the Foods and Drugs Agency (FDA), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). The EPA oversees the use of biopesticides (Federal Association of Scientists). In regards to the application of GM technology, the EPA oversees the manipulation of the Bt toxin in the production of GMO foods. The scientists responsible for the production of the GMO foods have to submit samples to the EPA for analysis to ensure that the Bt toxin levels in the food are within safe limits. Furthermore, the EPA has to ascertain that the food does not cause allergic reactions to the consumers. Unless a given GMO product meets the safety levels as set by the EPA, they are not allowed to get to the shelves.

The government, through the FDA also regulates the production and sale of the GMO foods. Based on the standards of the FDA, the GMO foods are considered to be relatively safe. However, in the instances where the production of such foods involve the insertion of a transgene so that the protein expressed differs n structure from the conventional crop, FDA reserve the right to approve the product before the release to the market. This means that the government has controlled the distribution of the GMO foods in the country. The various policies are mainly aimed at ensuring that the GMO foods are safe and do not cause any adverse impacts to the end consumers. The USDA also plays a significant role in the regulation of the GM foods. The agency regulates the GM technology at the point at which the plants are introduced to the fields. Specifically, the regulations by the USDA are mainly aimed to ensure that the plants released to the fields meet certain standards. GM technology companies have to submit a wide range of data to the urgency that will be used to determine whether they meet the specified standard (Lau).

The Future of GM Technology

The science of genetic engineering, especially its application in agriculture to produce crops with desirable traits has not been with us for a long time. The current regime made certain sweeping changes in regards to the products of GM technology. Specifically, the government pushed for the abolishment of labeling terming such as "unnecessary" regulations so that it is impossible for the buyers to distinguish between GMO and other foods (Meyer). The previous government made improvements to the GMO regulations so that the consumers are safe. Part of the changes made by the previous administration was the implementation of the policy requiring the GM Technology produced foods to be labeled (Popken). Such was inspired by the skepticism of the consumers about the safety of the GMO foods. Some people do not believe in the GMO foods while others consider it as an excellent opportunity that can be used by governments to ascertain food security. Based on this, the current regime has maintained a status quo as far as the application of GM technology is concerned.

From a personal viewpoint, I foresee certain significant changes in the application of the GM technology especially with the current regime making changes in the regulation of the technology. So far, major steps have been made regarding the use of the technology to improve the yields, pest resistance, duration of maturity of cops in the market. My prediction about the future of the GM technology is its application being expanded to large-scale production of nutritional foods. Specifically, I foresee a situation where the geneticist can tailor the nutrients contained in certain foods. For instance, tomatoes that are rich in a certain mineral can be produced through the use the technology. Such will follow the support by the government that will allow the companies responsible for the technology to increasingly manipulate the crops to come up with the desirable traits.

The attitude of the people towards the production and consumption of the GMO foods is also likely to change in the future. Today, more and more people are embracing technology as a way of improving the well-being. In the process, many people appreciate the role of GM technology as far as food security and production of foods rich in certain nutrients is concerned. Such will lead to a surge in the consumption of the GMO foods, especially in the face of globalization that is threatening the survival of humans. Some parts of the globe are already experiencing a change in the climate, which affects the ability to produce enough food for the population. In this case, the government is likely to support the large-scale production of GMO foods, which is a direct endorsement of the GM technology. Some of the GMO will be destined for the foreign markets especially the developing world where cases of food shortage are a commonality.


In conclusion, it is apparent that GMO foods occupy a specific niche in the food industry. The backbone of such foods is the GM technology that utilizes concepts from genetic engineering to manipulate the genetic composition of crops to produce products with desirable attributes. Such attributes in most cases relate to the ability of the crops to withstand diseases, father maturity as well as increase in yields. The government has multiple agencies responsible for the regulation of the GM technology. The FDA, EPA, and USDA are mandated by the federal government to oversee the application of the technology in the production of GMO foods. However, the entrance of Trump administration made some changes in the regulations of GMOs. The changes are mainly geared towards promoting the application of the technology. For instance, the president issued an executive order abolishing the requirement that GMO foods should be labeled. In the future, the production of the GMO is likely to expand.

Works Cited

Engel, K-H., Th Frenzel, and A. Miller. “Current and Future Benefits from the Use of GM Technology in Food Production.” Toxicology Letters, vol. 127, no 1, 2002, pp. 329-336.

Federation of American Scientists. “U.S. Regulation of Genetically Modified Crops.” Fas.Org, 2017, Accessed Oct. 18, 2017.

Lau, Jessica. “Same Science, Different Policies: Regulating Genetically Modified Foods in the US and Europe.” Science in the News. Harvard University, 2015. Accessed Oct. 18, 2017.

Meyer, Nick. “Breaking News: President Trump Pushes Gmos in New Executive Order.” March Against Monsanto, 2017. Accessed Oct. 18, 2017.

Popken, Ben. “Obama Signs Controversial GMO Food Label Law.” NBC News, 2016. Accessed Oct. 18, 2017.

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