Which of the following is an advantage of creating genetically modified crops? (A) It is easy to manufacture and grow genetically modified crops, and it does not require specialized equipment. (B) There are increased financial gains from producing crops that are resistant to diseases and pests. (C) Genetically modified crops are widely available and universally accepted in worldwide agriculture. Or (D) genetically modified crops can pass on their altered genes to surrounding naturally occurring and wild plants.
This question asks us about an advantage in creating genetically modified crops. In order to answer this question correctly, let’s review the process of genetic engineering for crop development. Genetic engineering involves the artificial manipulation of genomes, usually to either introduce genes or to enhance or inhibit genes. You may recall that the genome refers to all the genetic material within an organism. For agricultural purposes, a good example of genetic engineering is the addition of a gene for pest resistance to the genome of a plant. Now the plant is resistant to a particular pest, which can save the farmer a lot of money by reducing the need for pesticides.
Genetic engineering requires very complex and specialized equipment in addition to a great deal of knowledge from scientists and researchers. We can therefore exclude option (A).
Genetically modified organisms are not universally accepted. For instance, some genetically modified organisms are banned in parts of Europe, but they are produced great numbers in the United States of America. So option choice (C) is incorrect.
They are not universally accepted because of the uncertainty in the technology. Some people fear that these desirable traits can be passed on to other plants, potentially creating superweeds that would be difficult to eliminate. So answer choice (D) is incorrect, as this describes a disadvantage of creating genetically modified crops.
Therefore, an advantage of creating genetically modified crops is given by answer choice (B). There are increased financial gains from producing crops that are resistant to diseases and pests.