A transgenic crop is a genetically modified organism (GMO). Transgenic indicates that a transfer of genes has occurred using recombinant DNA technology. Generally a transgenic crop contains one or more genes that have been inserted artificially either from an unrelated plant or from different species altogether.
Plants have been modified for many reasons over the years but the most common purpose is to produce the best products possible. Before recombinant DNA technology, it was possible to produce some improved products, although it was very difficult to do and many things could not be improved or changed. An improved product may involve changing the color or the size of a plant, making it more appealing to the buyer’s eye. Or it may be more practical, allowing increased tolerance to cold, frost, or drought; all making a crop easier to grow in a constantly changing environment.
Goals like above are unattainable with traditional selection programs and thus transgenics is now preferred when trying to come up with new products to improve sales. One of the hottest areas right now is the modification of crops to increase the resistance of plants to insects and diseases they may carry. Improving resistance to these diseases and insects also reduces the need for herbicides and pesticides. This makes the plants safer for the consumer and allows the farmer to save money on chemicals. In conclusion, transgenic crops are an economically safer method of producing crop products, which makes them appealing and potentially profitable.