The overwhelming demand for snacks and confections that contain natural ingredients is sparking some concern with food scientists. Western consumers are generally skeptical of industrial food processing and genetically modified organisms. These consumers believe GMOs to be bad for their health, that they may be poisonous and that they are bad for the environment despite the overwhelming amount of scientific evidence that shows that GMOs are safe to eat and that they may actually be better for the environment than standard farming practices.

The main concern of only consuming natural ingredients is that it might not be sustainable in the long run. In this article by, Dr. Martin Qaim, a professor at the department of agricultural economics at the University of Goettingen expressed that the health food trend can potentially inhibit innovation in the technology that would increase sustainability. “Genetically engineered (or gene edited) crops could not only help to increase and stabilize yield, but these technologies could also help reduce the use of agrochemicals and make plants more tolerant to various climate stresses.”

Instead of focusing solely on natural ingredients, in the future, it may be better for the environment if food manufacturers work on educating their consumers on the facts about GMOs. Combined with good agricultural practices, genetically modified organisms have the power to produce more food while lowering environmental impact without any negative health effects.

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