Electronic Journal of Biotechnology ISSN: 0717-3458
  © 2003 by Universidad Católica de Valparaíso -- Chile
Vol. 6 No. 1, Issue of April 15, 2003
 

Table 6. Potential advantages of genetic engineering for different types of actors (Classification developed by the author).


Actors

Advantages

Global society
new avenue of technological development based on living matter, biology and renewability, instead of  being based on chemistry and fossil resources.
a means of more sustainable development in the 21st Century.
a means (among others) to cope with climate change: faster breeding of new adapted varieties,   plant-chemistry instead of petroleum chemistry.
because of less production losses, the same amount of production can be obtained on a smaller area,  or a greater amount on the same surface. So it is less necessary to increase cultivated area by  deforestation or cultivation of new land.
Consumers potential increase in foodstuffs (interesting in LDCs), and slightly cheaper foodstuffs.
less risk from some chemical pesticides in the environment and in food.
products suited to specific demands (nutraceuticals, non-allergenic products, foodstuffs enriched or  limited in certain components).
- better nutritional balance for some foodstuffs.
lower prices for various vaccines and therapeutics.
improvement in the overall standard of living if the gains in productivity are shared by all.
Public authorities it help to maintain the competitiveness of biotech and seed industry in the country.
means of developing greater sustainability.
useful in contributing to solve certain problems (pollution, adaptation to climate change).
Public research biotechnology = an indispensable tool for knowledge, understanding and discovery, to allow a better  comprehension of many biological mechanisms unexplained up to now.
Farmers and agronomists easier to grow (simplified treatments), greater flexibility in interventions, possible means for improving  income.
decrease in losses, and better adaptation of plants to their environment.
less pollution by pesticides, mold (fungi), or impurities.
less need to increase cultivated surfaces, possibility of more sustainable agriculture.
Distribution cheaper products which can be better conserved.
- supply diversification, potential increase in profit margin on products with high added value.
Food-industry firms diversified raw materials which are cheaper and better adapted to a variety of uses, with less losses.
Seed firms necessary to cope with competition and avoid the dying of French and European seed industry.
useful tool for introducing new traits into plants (resistance, composition, etc.).
- allow quicker selection and better competitive resistance.
Agro-chemical & biotech firms - makes it possible to go beyond the limits of chemistry; a new avenue of development.
new markets; and perhaps innovation rent allowing to develop this sector.


Supported by UNESCO / MIRCEN network