ethical issues in agricultural biotechnology
November 13th, 2020

Available from: Cambridge, MA, MIT Press. View Article Concerns about the undue influence of commercial interests arise in connection with willingness to engage in practical ethical discourse. R. Earll, ed. Paula, Lino. PLoS One. The qualities of the products have to be determined on a case-by-case basis, for each individual product. London: Pluto Press pp 31-54. The financial resources and the number of researchers working on Golden Rice have been much smaller than in comparable, commercial, breeding projects. Precautionary principle In order to protect the environment, the precautionary approach shall be widely applied by States according to their capabilities. 2. 6:275-278. A central issue is whether the technology considers the pursuit of the greatest good together with the concept of sustainability for farmers and the environment. Other interesting plant breeding projects aim at perenniality and more efficient photosynthesis. Potential Biohazards of Recombinant DNA Molecules. However, it is also well known that if patent protection goes too far, then it can stifle important forms of innovation and development. Based on robust studies of previous agricultural technologies, social scientists were quick to predict that agricultural biotechnology would be a contributing factor in the restructuring of agriculture, the continuing decline of small-scale family-operated farms, and the concentration of economic power among a few agribusiness firms (Kalter, 1985; Kloppenburg, 1985; Kenny, 1986). It is not necessary that a newly produced GMO is 100% wrong or right. 83. von Wartburg, W. P. and Liew, J. The food industry can be expected to offer products satisfying the demands of these consumers, just as it does for consumers following the other life-styles just mentioned. 2015 Mar 3. 18. Nevertheless, there have been cases when potato cultivars with excessive solanine were released (e.g., “Lenape” in the USA), but had to be withdrawn due to their potential negative effects on human health [20,21]. Food Biotechnology: Labeling Will Benefit Industry as Well as Consumers, Nutrition Today 13(1):6-12. A fourth concerns the socio-economic impact of agricultural biotechnology on the viability of farms, rural communities and the process of globalization. Heyd D. Experimenting with embryos: Can philosophy help? PubMed/NCBI View Article Food Ethics. There has been a longstanding ethical debate as to whether technology or policy that has these effects on farming communities can be ethically justified in virtue of offsetting benefits in the form of efficient production and lower food prices. Uncovering the human genome was a tremendous step forward for science, but the discovery created a series of new concerns. No genetic transformation that would result in genetically engineered or cloned animals enduring greater suffering than ordinary livestock is being proposed. Yes, in fact it has, since it teaches us a general lesson on precaution and risk assessment that is highly relevant for the on-going discussion on the ethics of agricultural biotechnology. The upshot is that agricultural biotechnology is associated with possible consequences that are potentially catastrophic in impact, though in comparison to risks of global climate change or human population growth the probability of catastrophic environmental impact accruing from agricultural biotechnology must be regarded as comparatively low. PubMed/NCBI Analysis of open source biotechnology in developing countries: An emerging framework for sustainable agriculture. Scientific uncertainties that were conquered and extinguished by successful research several decades ago still have a ghost life in the ethical literature. In the application of an ethical system containing several such mid-level principles, conflicts may arise between the principles. This may be impossible in some cases, especially if ingredients have been imported from countries with no documentation requirements for gene editing. Great Uncertainty about Small Things. Any GM food must meet the general criterion of halalan tayyiban which means “permissible from the shariah perspective (halal) and of good quality (tayyib)”. For instance, think of some foodstuff that you eat. Cranor, C. F. 1999. Arguments opposing technological improvement of agricultural production and rural infrastructure evolved into socialist and communitarian conceptions of social justice. Paul R. Tools for Survival: Proposing a Research Exemption for Agricultural Biotechnology Patents to Alleviate Global Hunger. PubMed/NCBI View Article 2004;8(2):26-35. From examples like this we can learn at least three important lessons with quite general applicability: (1) For action-guiding purposes, assessments of risk are not sufficient. Nucleic acid amplification testing of blood donors for transfusion-transmitted infectious diseases. This practice means that scientists are very conservative about allowing a result to viewed as 'known'. The little beasts. Crosses between the aggressive weed Johnson grass (Sorghum halapense) and cultivated sorghum (Sorghum bicolor) seem to have given rise to particularly difficult forms of Johnson grass [26]. In Protecting Public Health and the Environment: Implementing the Precautionary Principle. View Article This area of ethical concern has been discussed above. Accessed 2019 Jun 13. In current practice, this means that food products not containing such ingredients can, at the producer’s discretion, be provided with labelling announcing this. Increased yields decrease the need for farmland, which is good for the global environment, but the methods used to achieve this tend to have negative environmental effects in the local areas where the increased yields are obtained.

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