Ethics on Genetically Modified Food Essay

In determining the quality of life, it takes into account not only the well-being of citizens but also the climate, geographical location and much more. However, if social problems are solved at the proper level in the country, then no cold and endless spaces will prevent it from being comfortable for living. Today, the ethical dilemma is about genetically modified food, as well as about products containing GMOs, and how genetically modified organisms affect human health and the environment (Arya, 2015). This is a very important topic since genetically modified organisms (if they are released into the environment) will be distributed uncontrollably and we can never remove them. Therefore, the consequences of the spread (the consequences of the fact that they came out of the walls of laboratories and were on our table, in our garden) can be extremely broad and affect the whole world. That is why Greenpeace is trying to prevent any spread of genetically modified organisms in the environment, crops – everywhere. In addition, there is a moral dilemma in using genetically modified food. When a doctor authorizes the use of a potentially hazardous substance, if he made a mistake or intentionally allowed a substance, the maximum responsibility that he can bear is disciplinary, in the worst case, he may be dismissed. As for the members of the state experts, people who are on the commission can be prosecuted if they make mistakes. When we talk about drugs, they mostly use the products of genes, not the genes themselves. Therefore, most drugs are safe in terms of genetic effects. Moreover, here we must say that biotechnology, of course, needs to be developed, and it is believed that it should be fully supported by the state and financed by the state. However, when we talk about GM crops, what happened? Biotechnologists have failed, and businessmen hurried. Moreover, stopping a business, even if someone found a mistake, is very difficult, almost impossible. In addition, those scientists, those biotechnologists, who receive funds from those companies that produce these GM crops, come out mostly for transgenic plants. Moreover, we have to separate science and commerce as the moral agents: science needs to be developed, biotechnology certainly needs to be developed and maintained, but at this stage in the development of biotechnology, commercial use of GM products is terribly dangerous.

The dilemma of using genetically modified food violates a lot of ethical principles. Paternalism in healthcare is a classic model of the relationship between a doctor and a patient, in which the patient relies entirely on the qualifications and experience of the attending physician. With this type of interaction, the doctor acts as a “father” caring for the “child” and fully takes responsibility for the patient’s health and life. The patient, in turn, is a passive subject and does not make any decisions regarding the treatment process. The main disadvantage of this approach to treatment (with the help of new GM products) is the fact that the patient is deprived of the opportunity to control his life and destiny. The patient cannot choose the most acceptable method of treatment for him from several possible ones and make the final decision regarding his health (Verma, Nanda, Singh, Singh & Mishra, 2011). As a result, there is one more ethical point – nonmaleficence. Of course, the fact that GM food is used in medicine gives an absolutely positive effect, and there is no doubt that when this kind of technology is used in closed systems, do not fall into the environment and do not fall on our table indefinitely, they can only be supported. In addition, it is concerned with the principle of beneficence. It is impossible to talk about a grandiose cheapening of products made from genetically modified plants. Their cost is about the same, just in one case – when you grow a normal plant without using a large number of herbicides, you need to spend a little more work, and in the other case – you need to invest the same pesticides and herbicides that also cost money. This is just another investment mechanism. Also, it is about veracity violation. It is impossible to visually distinguish genetically modified plants from unmodified. It is impossible to distinguish potatoes without laboratory research, it is impossible to distinguish soybeans, it is impossible to distinguish corn and it is impossible to distinguish tomatoes – this is what can come to us on the market. That is why we insist that the state must maintain control and very clearly label all products that come to us.

At the end of the 20th century, anti-paternalistic sentiments are gaining momentum, and new models of doctor-patient relationships are beginning to be developed and implemented in the United States and Western European countries. In 1972, the American Association of Hospitals approved a bill of rights for patients, in which the patient’s right to information was enshrined among the fundamental rights. The principle of paternalism was replaced by the principle of cooperation, which involved informing the patient about all stages of treatment and obtaining consent from him for medical procedures (the so-called “informed consent”). Currently, along with the paternalistic model, there are three more doctor-patient interaction models. A technical-type model is a type of interaction between a physician and a patient, in which the physician treats the patient as a “faulty mechanism”. The main goal of the doctor in this model of communication is to eliminate the “malfunction” in the patient’s body, while the main principle that guides the doctor is impartiality. Responsibility for the outcome of treatment when using the technical type model lies on both the doctor and the patient, who has the last word on the choice of treatment methods. The model of the collegial type is the type of interaction between the doctor and the patient, in which they act as equal colleagues. Sociodemographic characteristics of the patient (social status, age, gender, etc.) do not affect his position as an equal with the doctor. Responsibility for the result of treatment with this model of communication lies equally on the doctor and the patient. A contract type model is a type of interaction between a doctor and a patient, which is based on a contract. The contract prescribes the principles that will guide the doctor and patient in communicating with each other. Responsibility for the result of treatment with this model of communication lies on both the doctor and the patient. The latter reserves the right to make the final decision regarding the choice of treatment methods.

The use of new technologies without a clear understanding of the consequences of their actions can lead to the most tragic results. The large-scale spread of transgenic organisms and the gradual introduction of alien genetic material into the plant, animal and human cells can lead to irreversible pathological changes in organisms of living beings and to their extinction. The objectivity of scientific methods seems to be stolen and perverted by corporations that are often bought from scientists support of their own products, as well as politicians who use the principle of revolving doors (rapid cyclical change of leaders) in private and public the domestic sector. And the worst part is that consumer rights protection agencies themselves sometimes become complicit in such schemes. Consumer belief in scientific research and trust in government supervisors were trampled on for profit, which led to a situation where it was allowed to sell products on the market with low-security standards.

In the United States of America, GMO content is not regulated. However, there are cases when individual genetic modified plants were forbidden for human consumption. Obviously, the emergence of such legislative installations reflects a certain concern of state bodies and the general public about GMO issues. According to independent experts, 37 people were already victims of GMOs in the US, and another 1,500 were disabled. Monsanto Corporation began as a company that produced such toxic chemicals as Agent Orange and Roundup. Now it is better known for its dominant position in the market for genetically modified seeds. Monsanto owns about 90 percent of the main GMO crops, such as corn, soybeans, and cotton. In the course of independent research, it was found out that genetic modification of products is caused by damage to plant organs, and the latest Russian studies have shown that hamsters fed GMO soy are completely infertile in the third generation. Despite these and many other proven problems, it does not appear that the FDA (US Food and Drug Administration), which is controlled by Monsanto, will stop the cultivation of GMO products while the USDA continues to emit insignificant $ 3 million to fund its biotechnology risk research and assessment office. Of course, industry-funded studies show that the effect of GMOs on human health is insignificant.

In May 2009, members of the American Academy of Environmental Medicine, the oldest in the United States, demanded a moratorium on the use of GMOs in the country and urged colleagues to monitor their impact on patient health (Smith, 2009). Following the precautionary principle, given that GM products have not been adequately tested for human safety, and due to the presence of clear evidence of possible harm, the Academy asks to educate their patients, the medical community and the general public avoid GM foods and provide them with educational materials about GM foods and the health risks associated with their use. Doctors pay attention to the possible effect of GM products on the course of the disease of the patients they treat and document all changes that have occurred to the patient’s health when switching from transgenic food to food that does not contain GMOs. The members, the medical community and an independent scientific community to collect information on cases from practice that could potentially be associated with the use of GMOs and their effects on health, to begin epidemiological studies using safe methods in order to identify the effects of GM foods on human health. Declare a moratorium on GM products, conduct long-term independent research on the safety of GMOs, and introduce labeling of GM products are the measures necessary for the health and safety of consumers.

The alternative for the genetically modified food is the popularity of restaurants that announce that their products are 100% non-GMO. Due to the growing competition, many of them go further: they start to cook only vegetarian food from local products, and the dishes are made from second processing. All this says one thing: Americans want to eat only healthy food. Last year, demand for organic products in the United States grew. However, American farmers were still stuck in the 1990s, growing genetically modified products (GMOs) that were bathed in synthetic chemicals and which Americans do not want to eat. To meet consumer demand, the country imports more organic food and feed than ever before. Some products cannot be grown in the US in sufficient quantities – coffee, bananas, some oils – but American farmers are definitely able to grow more organic matter. For example, they have mastered the production of organic soybeans. The emphasis on organic matter, the rejection of food additives, genetically modified foods – is the choice of man and his path to health. Organic foods help prolong life, eliminate disease, improve health. Today, organic food is widely in demand on the global market. Large seed companies carefully monitor state legislatures, spending tens of millions of dollars to defeat food labeling and calling laws. may affect agricultural production.

GM technology gives tremendous opportunities for crossing anything. The alternatives of using genetically modified products can be considered as drugs derived from genetically modified microorganisms – a group of specific drugs, the source of which are genetically modified microorganisms. Among the reflections for the healthcare of genetic engineering, it is necessary to name, first of all, the production of substances vital for a person with the help of special genetically modified microorganisms. That is, people “taught” microbes to produce completely unusual for them compounds, which are much better and cheaper than “natural” analogs. Among such compounds, the most important are those whose lack or absence in the human body leads to serious diseases: diabetes, hemophilia, dwarfism, anemia, etc. GMOs in medicine is one of the most promising areas for obtaining vaccines and drugs that can effectively deal with the most terrible diseases – plague, HIV and others. GMOs in agriculture are minimizing the use of pesticides, reducing costs, increasing environmental friendliness, improving the taste of products, beneficial changes in their composition (more or less fat, adding vitamins and microelements), more efficient use of acreage, accelerated crop growth the most effective way to solve the problem of hunger. Yes, there are more and more people on the planet, but there are no food resources. Genetic engineering has opened up new opportunities for creating drugs that do not cause allergic reactions, such as when using insulin of animal origin and drugs that do not contradict the ethical norms of society.


Arya, D. (2015). Genetically Modified Foods Benefits and Risks. Retrieved from

Smith, J. (2009). Doctors Warn: Avoid Genetically Modified Food. Retrieved from

Verma, C., Nanda, S., Singh, R., Singh, R., & Mishra, S. (2011). A Review on Impacts of Genetically Modified Food on Human Health. Retrieved from

The terms offer and acceptance. (2016, May 17). Retrieved from

[Accessed: June 30, 2022]

"The terms offer and acceptance.", 17 May 2016.

[Accessed: June 30, 2022] (2016) The terms offer and acceptance [Online].
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[Accessed: June 30, 2022]

"The terms offer and acceptance.", 17 May 2016

[Accessed: June 30, 2022]

"The terms offer and acceptance.", 17 May 2016

[Accessed: June 30, 2022]

"The terms offer and acceptance.", 17 May 2016

[Accessed: June 30, 2022]

"The terms offer and acceptance.", 17 May 2016

[Accessed: June 30, 2022]
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