Ecologists and other scientists have long expressed concerns about the possible effect of releasing genetically modified organisms (GMOs) into the environment, while others emphasize their possible environmental benefits. The broad consequences of national and international regulations underscore the policy and research communities’ need for current scientific information and for awareness of where informational gaps occur. There is a current emphasis on crop plants, but developments of genetically engineered fish, trees, and microbes may alter perspectives. Public debate about the acceptability of genetically modified organisms in the production of food and feed has included controversy about risks of harming human health and/or the natural environment. These reactions are due, in part, to strong judgments formed from memorable events. Such judgments are common when individuals do not have a good understanding of risks. Economic and psychological theories of decision making provide an understanding of how these judgments are formed, how they might evolve, and what can be done to influence them. Public dialogue and action must account for cognitive difficulties assessing risks to stimulate public evaluation that gives full consideration to the benefits and cost of genetically modified organisms. Genetic alteration of plants and animals is seen by many as an interference with nature that has unknown and potentially disastrous interactions with human genetics and natural ecosystems. This paper looks at the concept of GMO exploring the available information to decide whether in fact GMO’s are a threat to the society.
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