An Analysis on GM Crops in Asian Countries

Because of the apparent threat of a global food crisis, some sectors are turning into genetically modified products to increase yield for consumption. Still, not all are into the plan.

There were five countries that were focused in the article. These are the Philippines, Japan, South Korea, China, and Thailand. The article was ordered in such a way that the countries most receptive to GM crops were presented first. Somehow, it appeared that the Philippines is the most open with regards to GM corn being a solution to the food crisis. But there is a catch to that and that will be mentioned as we go along.

From there, it gets stingier as Japan might consider importing GM grains if the situation might call for it. For now, the Japanese government is content on importing GM products for cooking oil, animal feed, and manufactured goods.

This is also the same case in China where it has a detailed stipulation as early as 2001 with regards to GM products and its uses. The closest the country allows in having GM substances is through indirect means like in edible oil and this should be properly labeled.

A Developmental Research Centre official was even quoted, "No genetically modified grain, including seeds, is allowed for edible consumption in China."

South Korea, on the other hand, implemented a law at the start of the year that imposes strict rules on importing of GM seeds. Presently, the peninsula is importing GM food crops for research purposes. From the manner the agriculture ministry official was quoted, it seems that the country would not bend its rules anytime soon even with an impending catastrophe.

Thailand, where the United Nations’ Food and Agricultural Organisation is based, pulled up its nose to the idea of even considering using GM food crops for commercial use and the official even bared that the rest of the continent is not bent on the idea either.

This now leads us to the conclusion of the article where the Philippine source was quoted that the country was just mimicking the agricultural policies of the United States. As much as that the archipelago is the odd man out in this article, it even exposes that the idea might not even be originally theirs.

As an afterthought, Asian countries in general have not yet embraced the idea of including GM food as part of their citizens’ diet. Nevertheless, there are still a minority of nations who are up to it or who might consider doing so when events do not improve.

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