Safeguards

In the United States, the safety of transgenic crops is monitored by biotech firms, academia, and governmental regulators from the Food and Drug Administration, the

Environmental Protection Agency, and the Department of Agriculture.[11-13] Test strategies are scientifically robust and proportionate to other areas of safety evaluation.[14,15] To become commercial, a GM crop must be considered as safe as crops currently produced and nonobjections from governmental agencies must be on file. In addition, isolation zones can be imposed to avoid pollen transfer, refuge areas specified to postpone insect resistance, and prohibition regions established to avoid habitats of endangered species. The benefits of a transgenic crop e.g., increased yield or nutritional value, reduced insecticide and herbicide use, reduced fungal damage, decreased nutrient waste by animals must outweigh adverse effects on other plants or nontarget species. Safety evaluation is more stringent and more extensive for GM crops than for conventional crops. Biotech companies and academic groups conduct voluntary stewardship trials to test the nutritive value of transgenic crops and products. In numerous trials and field tests with poultry, swine, dairy and beef cattle, and fish,[2,16-19] no adverse effects of transgenic plants or plant products on productivity have been detected.[10]

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