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GMO perceptions among Swedish stakeholders and their implication on the acceptance of a new biotechnological advancement
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Earth Sciences, Department of Earth Sciences.
2018 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

With the global population expected to reach more than 10 billion by the year 2050, one of the global challenges will be in meeting the growing food demand. Coupled with the effects of climate change on the environment, the world will need plant varieties that can adapt to changing environmental conditions to meet the food production challenge. A viable option to aid food production is using genetic modification for more specific plant breeding and crop optimization. The usage of genetic modification has been highly debated since the course of its first developed commercialized crop. The consumer concerns, stringent regulations and rigorous testing genetically modified crops face, may be circumvented with the legally undefined development of new biotechnological advancements such as CRISPR. This study aims to investigate whether arguments used against GMOs from different stakeholders and antiGM NGOs in Sweden are applicable to the CRISPR technique. Through content analysis of policy documents of influential stakeholders and a literature review of the scientific literature, major concerns with GMOs are identified and their applicability to the CRISPR technique analyzed. This study finds that the most prevalent reservations against GMOs do not apply to the new biotechnology, although the applicability and in effect acceptance of CRISPR among Swedish stakeholders depends on its legal classification, which the European Commission has yet to determine. The findings in this study also indicate that the reservations against GMOs are based on misconceptions and that if CRISPR falls into the same legal category, it will be subject to the same obstacles in its implementation. The implications of its categorical classification may in addition affect a possible utilization of CRISPR among Swedish crop producers in taking part in the global food production challenge. This study concludes that while the prevalent reservations against GMOs do not apply to CRISPR, its acceptance may solely rely on its legal classification and as such there is a need for a closer look on the regulations around the various biotechnologies, as well as a need for better biotechnological communication between researchers, decision makers and consumers.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018. , p. 38
Series
Examensarbete vid Institutionen för geovetenskaper, ISSN 1650-6553 ; 2018/3
Keywords [en]
Sustainable Development, GMO, biotechnology, CRISPR, Reservations, Sweden.
National Category
Earth and Related Environmental Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-339470OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-339470DiVA, id: diva2:1175833
Educational program
Master Programme in Sustainable Development
Presentation
2018-01-18, Geocentrum, Villavägen 16, Uppsala, 01:46 (English)
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2018-01-19 Created: 2018-01-19 Last updated: 2018-01-19Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
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