Let's get growing
If you've travelled to America recently you've probably eaten GM soya in a burger or bagel. Twenty-three countries around the world are already growing genetically modified food.
In Europe farmers have planted very few GM crops because of negative public opinion in the late 1990s.
But new generations of GM crops have the potential to produce higher yields using less land, water and pesticide. Charities – not just agrochemical giants – are interested in GM crops for the benefits they could offer the developing world.
Rob, one of the exhibition team members, says: 'Since millions of people have been eating GM crops for over ten years, can't we accept they're safe?'
GM supporters feel that genetic modification is just the next step on from traditional plant breeding.
When plants breed, they swap genes – the sets of instructions that give them certain characteristics. Farmers have been breeding plants to create new strains with particular properties for centuries.
In genetic modification, scientists select and move genes from one plant to another in the lab. They can also choose genes from animals or bacteria to give a crop particular advantages.
But is it sensible to alter plants with GM? The idea of GM food turns some people's stomachs because it can involve mixing genes that would never normally meet.
Rob says: 'GM technology can give plants useful properties they couldn't get in the wild. Why should we limit ourselves to traditional breeding methods?'
In Antenna we served up four different challenges to see what GM could deliver.