7 Impressive Pros and Cons of Golden Rice
Genetically modified foods are a topic that is sweeping the entire world. None more than the golden rice controversy, however. Golden rice is rice that has been modified to contain many different nutrients and minerals that rice naturally doesn’t have. Many countries, such as Vietnam and India, rely very heavily on rice as part of their daily food, which was causing problems of malnutrition to be very apparent. The developers and supporters of golden rice believe that this is the answer to these countries problems. However, the true effects of consumption of golden rice have not been fully researched, along with most GMO food products, and have other problems surrounding it.
The Pros of Golden Rice
1. Supplies Nutrition
The biggest advantage that golden rice supplies is the simple fact that it provides much needed nutrition to people who would other wise not be able to obtain it. Normal rice lacks many of the vitamins needed for good health, including vitamin A. If a vitamin A deficiency is severe enough it can lead to blindness, fatigue, and even death.
2. Illness Is An Economic Burden
Vitamin deficiencies cause hundreds of thousands of illnesses and deaths each and every year in developing countries. This causes a major economic burden because of the over crowded hospitals and lack of healthy people to work. Golden rice helps to ease these problems and enrich the country being affected.
3. Reduces Gastrointestinal Problems
Another major problem that plagues developing countries is stomach and digestion issues. This has to do with the types of food that they eat and what they contain. Golden rice is specially formulated to ease these problems and even help prevent diseases from forming.
4. Reduced Pesticide Use
Golden rice has pesticides put directly into them, which alleviate the need for them to be continuously sprayed on the crops as they grow. This improves the health of the food and these benefits can also spread to the surrounding crops, reducing the use of pesticides on even more food.
The Cons of Golden Rice
1. Over Regulations Means Higher Prices
Golden rice, at it’s core, is relatively cheap and easy to obtain. However, the government has put so many different regulations onto this food source that the additional testing that has to be done has driven the price up quite a bit.
2. Is It Really Enough?
Many researchers have come out to say that the minimal nutrient that golden rice does supply, is not nearly enough to combat the issues that it claims it can. It takes a whole lot of education and money to turn around malnutrition issues as big as some of these countries are enduring.
3. Wasted Money
There have been millions upon millions of dollars put into the development, research, and production of golden rice. Critics argue that this money would be much better spent on education the people of these countries, implementing farming and medical programs, and giving them more resources to take care of themselves. Golden rice is another way for these developing countries to further rely on the aid of developed nations.