Today, you can find “genetically modified crops” which are more sustainable food production systems and the credit goes to the research team of biotechnology. The introduction of these plants indicated a new era in food production, environmental health and ethical considerations. However, the top engineering colleges in Coimbatore India provide awareness about the genetic engineering contribution to agriculture and solutions to the traditional challenges of maintaining sustainability. This article gives insights into the use of genetically modified crops and its effects in today’s world.
What is genetic engineering in agriculture?
The process of modifying the organism via artificial manipulation, replication of DNA and reconfiguration that carries genetic information for the development and functions of an organism is a clear definition of genetic engineering. In agriculture or the production of food, this genetic engineering concept allows for an increase the crop yields and also makes the expected results. However, there are some challenges that future engineers may choose to resolve. It includes the negative impact on the environment and human health that results in long-term genetic problems and spores that may disrupt natural crop growth. Genetic engineering is extensively employed despite these problems since the advantages exceed the disadvantages.
Benefits of genetic engineering in agriculture:
Genetic engineering in agriculture has a significant effect on improving and increasing crop production. Introduction of specific genes that withstand hard scenarios like drought, extreme temperatures or saline soil. These genetically modified crops have the potential to grow in unfavourable conditions resulting the crop production. This helps to increase the crop yields, reduce food costs, food quality, food security and increase the medicinal value.
Genetically engineered foods:
Consumption of a higher percentage of genetic engineering foods that include maize, potatoes, soybeans and other crops. Most maize crops are genetically modified to resist insect assault because maize crops are more vulnerable to insect attack. The usage of pesticides to kill insects is avoided with genetically modified maize, resulting in more naturally occurring and clean maize yields. Insect and viral resistance have also been added to potatoes through genetic engineering. A few potatoes have also been genetically altered to prevent browning when they are packaged.
Increase the Resistance:
Herbicide: Herbicide substances which are toxic to the plants and destroy the undesirable plants. It is essential in today’s modern agriculture practices. One gene can be transferred to plants to make them adverse to herbicides. This is significant since it is still difficult to transfer many genes to plants. By minimising and streamlining the use of herbicides, the adoption of herbicide-resistant plants benefits farmers in other ways. In the modern era, genetic engineering helps researchers transmit resistance to plants that don’t use herbicides.
Insect: Nowadays, crop damage because of insects is common and the reason for a large portion of agricultural losses. Through genetic engineering, you can give plants a new Deoxyribonucleic Acid gene that increases their defence against insects. For instance, genetically modified crops called Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) crops include crystal poisons from bacteria that increase their resistance to other insects.
Virus: Various agricultural techniques and strategies are implemented to manage plant virus diseases with different functions and experiments. Now, genetic engineering has developed that offers encouraging results in virus resistance in plants. The most effective strategy for plant virus resistance is the production of protective protein via protein genes. More investigation is being done to provide a more straightforward procedure for delivering the protein gene into plants to increase their virus resistance.
Frost: Everyone is aware that plants need a critical temperature range to survive. For instance, a normal seed plant can survive in temperature as low as -1 degree but below -4 degree, the plant freezes or fall. This scenario can be changed with the genetic engineering that enables seed plants to resist negative temperatures, allowing plants to withstand extremely severe climatic conditions.
Delay in ripening:
Another significant issue in agriculture is ripening and with genetic engineering, it is now easy to postpone or delay the fruit ripening. It is suggested to preserve fruit in cool temperatures like freezers. The delaying process begins with the enzyme known as ACC oxidase catalyses the oxidation of ACC to ethylene where it biosynthesis pathways. Utilising anti-sense technology, the ACC oxidase gene is downregulated, suppressing ethylene production and delaying fruit ripening.
Genetic engineering applications in agriculture have transformed and reshaped the concept of the production and consumption of food. They have the potential to increase crop resilience, conserve natural resources, and biodiversity and customize crops based on the local area requirements. It is a promising solution for the challenges like food security and environmental sustainability. When used appropriately, that ensures agriculture has a better and more sustainable future. If you desire to learn more and contribute to agriculture, then enroll in the best engineering college in Coimbatore.