Cotton is a soft, fluffy staple fiber that grows in a boll , or protective case, around the seeds of the cotton plants of the genus Gossypium in the mallow family Malvaceae. The fiber is almost pure cellulose. Under natural conditions, the cotton bolls will increase the dispersal of the seeds. The plant is a shrub native to tropical and subtropical regions around the world, including the Americas, Africa, Egypt and India. The greatest diversity of wild cotton species is found in Mexico, followed by Australia and Africa. The fiber is most often spun into yarn or thread and used to make a soft, breathable textile.
Case studies: A hard look at GM crops
Potential for the environmental impact of transgenic crops
A group of scientists from the University of Koblenz-Landau, Germany, has shown that for plants and insects the applied pesticide toxicity in agriculture has substantially increased between and In a paper published in the current issue of Science, the authors show that this pattern is even relevant in genetically modified GM crops that were originally designed to reduce pesticide impacts on the environment. Fish, mammals, and birds face lower applied toxicities than in the s, because insecticide classes such as organophosphates, which show high vertebrate toxicity, are used less today. Aquatic invertebrates and pollinators, such as honeybees, yet experience the opposite: despite reduced applied amounts, applied toxicity for these species groups has more than doubled between and A shift in the insecticides used towards usage of pyrethroid and neonicotinoid insecticides is responsible for this trend. The applied toxicity increases for herbicides as well, alongside the applied amount. In this case, terrestrial plants are facing the highest increase in applied toxicity.
Reasons of Labeling GM Food
Genetic modification refers to techniques used to manipulate the genetic composition of an organism by adding specific useful genes. All organisms have DNA genes. Genes are located in chromosomes.
Agriculture of any type - subsistence, organic or intensive - affects the environment, so it is natural to expect that the use of new genetic techniques in agriculture will also affect the environment. The ICSU, the GM Science Review Panel and the Nuffield Council on Bioethics, among others, agree that the environmental impact of genetically transformed crops may be either positive or negative depending on how and where they are used. Genetic engineering may accelerate the damaging effects of agriculture or contribute to more sustainable agricultural practices and the conservation of natural resources, including biodiversity.