Table of contents:
- Body paragraphs
As you consider writing a persuasive essay discussing the pros or cons of genetically modified food, think first of all of the stand you want to take. Remember, your thesis should be a strong one rather than wishy-washy, but that does not mean you need to take an extreme stand.
Your introduction should contain your succinctly worded statement of purpose answering the question, “Should food be genetically modified?” If you are arguing for, you will be on the pro side, and if you are arguing against, you will be on the con side.
Pro: Genetically modified food has already been happening for hundreds of years and is the future solution to famine as our world suffers from the effects of climate change.
Con: Genetically modified food causes more harm than help, due to crop homogenization and the risk of disease in plants; moreover, messing with the way plants grow naturally is playing God and therefore immoral.
Once your introduction is over, continue on into the body of your essay, writing down all the reasons why you’ve taken the position that you have, and providing evidence to back those reasons up. Because this essay is persuasive in nature, you can argue the advantages and disadvantages based on emotion or anecdotes if you prefer, though including some scientific evidence will go further toward answering the question of whether genetically modified food is truly harmful or helpful.
Body paragraphs examples
Pro: Humans have been breeding plants via artificial selection for thousands of years now; modern GMO is merely the inevitable result of what we’ve already been doing as a species. When it comes to whether the food produced is harmful or helpful, it’s clear that humanity has thrived from the work we’ve done, and it’s clear that we will continue to thrive as a species due to the work of modifying plants that we are doing now. Which is not to say genetically modified food shouldn’t be carefully tested, or labeled, or that it holds no risks whatsoever! But on the whole, scientists agree that genetically modified food, when it undergoes proper testing, holds no more risks to people than any other kind of food.
Con: Although scientists tend to think that genetically modified food poses no real risk, there are quite a few controversies that surround changing the way our food grows. We have been modifying food for thousands of years, it’s true, but this has had negative effects as well as positive. For instance, the banana your great-grandparents knew was a completely different type of banana than the one you might be eating right now, and this is because the original banana was overbred and eventually succumbed to disease, wiping the entire specific kind of banana out.
As you come to a conclusion, wrap up your argument by telling your audience, briefly, what you’ve already told them. This reinforces your points in your reader’s mind. Then give them a chance to act or think in a different way, to drive home the point that they should be persuaded by your essay.
Pro: Genetically modified food is important to the future of the world, just as it’s been important to our history. Take the time to consider the whole picture and give GMO food a try.
Con: Be careful; genetically modified food might be all right, but you never know when it might not be. Check your food labels carefully to be sure you’re avoiding GMO foods, and live a long and healthy life.