Minnesota Farmer


Modified, Where do we go from here?

As much as some would like to stuff it back in, the GMO genie is out of the bottle.  The use of genetic modifications in sciences of all kinds will continue to come.  Medical breakthroughs will help us to lengthen life.  Our food plants will grow faster, use less fertilizer and water.  Our food will grow faster on less feed.  Our companion animals will live longer and be more helpful.  All because of genetic modifications that are either now being developed or will be in the future.

My specific focus, on the crops raised here in Southwestern Minnesota, will also see some changes.  Here are some I’ll especially be looking forward to;

  • Drought tolerance and efficient water usage will increase.
  • Use of fertilizers will decrease as plants become more efficient.
  • Plants will be breed to take their nitrogen from the air eliminating the need for nitrogen fertilizers that are currently produced by the oil industry.
  • More plants will be developed for specific industries with corn varieties specific for feed stocks in industry and livestock feed, and changes in the oil and meal content of soybeans.
  • Disease tolerant varieties of crops will be developed quicker as new crop diseases and insect pests develop or move to new areas.
  • More crops will be developed that contain needed vitamins and minerals so that those in countries facing vitamin and mineral deficiencies will live a healthier life.

These are just a few of the discoveries we have to look forward to.  The future advantages of genetic modification far outweigh the potential problems.  It is going to be an exciting future.

Michael

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