Prior to learning about GMO products and completing this task, I thought that GMO products were something to be avoided because I thought that they were unnatural and unhealthy. It had a negative connotation in my mind because I thought that altering the genetic makeup of foods would lead to unwanted health risks and side effects. I also thought that by genetically modifying crops, their nutritional value would decrease and the crops would be less natural for the human body to consume. Although I had negative opinions about GMO products, my ideas were very ignorant because I had never looked into how GMO products were made or considered any possible benefits.
My perspective on using GMO products has changed because now I am aware of the many benefits of GMO crops, especially BT corn. Before, I did not know the advantages of genetically modifying crops, such as disease-resistance, pest-resistance, drought tolerance, and much more. I realize now that GMO crops such as BT corn save farmers from using pesticides, fertilizers, and other harmful chemicals that are expensive and hurtful to the environment. BT corn, for example, is genetically modified to be resistant to rootworm, a pest that feeds on roots and that can cause up to $1 billion worth of annual losses. This is just one of the benefits of BT corn. Without BT corn, farmers would face devastating losses and would not be able to produce as fruitful of a yield. I used to think that genetically modifying crops was mainly for the purpose of producing huge yields, but I now know that there are many other benefits of GMO products.
Advice that I would give to the congresswoman is to look into GMO products and carefully evaluate both sides. It is very possible that the advantages of having GMO crops outweigh the disadvantages, and in that case, it would be better to plant GMO crops. If the citizens of the country can greatly benefit in terms of health, economics, and decrease of starvation or famine with very little negative side effects, then it would be wise to use GMO crops. However, if the GMO crops would end up harming the environment or consumers more, then I would advise to not consider proposing GMO crops to the foreign delegate.
An alternative that I would propose to the proposition is to focus on improving the transportation infrastructure in the country. That way, foodstuffs and crops can be imported frequently from other countries nearby. Since the area is prone to drought, planting regular, non-GMO crops would probably not have successful yields. By focusing on improving the technology and infrastructure of transportation, the country can get what they need from neighboring countries and perhaps establish a strong network of trade in and out of the country.