Beyond GMOs - Biotechnology in the agri-food sector

It has been determined that sustainability is the key criteria for assessing the ability of biotechnologies to address the challenges of the future. The paper analyzes genetic engineering and the new biotechnologies applied to food in emerging and developed countries.

To address future challenges resulting from global demographic growth, climate change, aand water and fuel scarcity, sustainable agriculture must produce food and promote biodiversity of crops and the ecosystem in which they grow, protect farmable areas from being depleted and hydrogeological disturbances, and limit the use of fertilizers and agricultural chemicals and the consumption of fossil fuels. However, agriculture in the future must also ensure adequate profits for farmers and accessible prices for consumers.

It is difficult to imagine reaching these objectives without strong investments in innovation, in many cases with the aid of agri-food biotechnologies, a broad technological area that includes several techniques and tools for the purpose of research and modification and selection of adequate cultivars for production or processing of agri-food products.

This paper objectively analyzes the role of biotechnologies (GMO and non-GMO) in the agri-food sector of various countries, focusing on their degree of circulation, on the objectives of the research programs, the national regulations adopted, and the degree of acceptance by public opinion.
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