Wheat is the product of a cross between three different grass species which is reputed to have happened about 10,000 B.C. Our forefathers quickly learned this wild grass was a good source of food for humans and animals. New species of wheat developed because early farmers selected kernels from their best wheat plants to use as seeds for planting the following year’s crop. That way, only the best wheat qualities were passed from one generation to the next.
Today, the method to select the best quality of corn-soybean-wheat-canola seed is selected in a lab. Biotechnology is not evil as reported in the media. Just keep in mind Bio means “living things” and technology means “the discover of scientific discovery used to solve problems”. In general terms, Biotechnology is just the use of scientific discovery about living things to solve a problem.
Like the B.C. farmers, Biotechnology today involves the process of Natural Selecting a desired trait or gene. The difference in the method. Presently, a machine can take the genetic footprint of a seed and identify the desirable trait (example, a plant species that uses less water to produce grain). Personally, this is an amazing innovation.
Food for Thought about Biotechnology
Biotechnology products in the United States are regulated more strictly than any other
agricultural or food product in history. The first biotech crop was available in 1996 but the research began many, many years before. In 1986, the government developed a framework of regulations for biotech crops to ensure it would be safe for humans to consume and the environment.
It is also noteworthy that a record 15.4 million farmers in 29 countries are using agricultural biotechnology. The grand total of biotech crop acreage of 366 million acres. Ninety percent (14.4 million) of these are resource-poor farmers in developing countries. This fact is a great example of how a scientific discover of living things can solve a problem- feeding nutritional food to people in countries where starvation is a leading killer.