Synthetic Biology | Sustainable Agriculture and Food Production
The agriculture and food industries have been seeing a constant change, with different new technical breakthroughs contributing to improving crop productivity and nutritive value of processed foods.
The necessity to increase farming productivity and food processing by using sophisticated novel biological technology has become crucial because of the rise in growing demands for highly nutritious food.
Synthetic biology is being used in agricultural and food solutions in underdeveloped nations, as well as in developed countries. Synthetic biologists are currently at the forefront of attempts to meet these urgent rising demands.
To boost agricultural yields, countries in North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, and Japan are increasingly turning to modern biological technologies like personalized medicine and DNA sequencing.
Climate change, increased crop diseases, insect attacks, and the growing demand for nutritious food are all looming challenges for the food and agriculture industries.
The demand for food and agricultural goods is expected to rise in the coming years, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). To enhance agricultural yield per hectare and supply high-quality nutritional food, the use of modern biological alternatives such as synthetic biology in the food and agriculture industries has been expedited.
As per BIS Research, the global synthetic biology in the agriculture and food market is projected to grow from $3.20 billion in 2020 to $14.12 billion by 2025, at a CAGR of 34.56% from 2020 to 2025.
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Synthetic Biology Paving the Way for a Sustainable Future
Food, which is mainly derived from plants or animals, is required to supply energy for human cellular metabolism. Microorganisms, mainly fermentation products, produce major food sources in addition to plants and animals (e.g., bread, wine, beer, soy sauce, etc.).
Nowadays, keeping the food supply secure, healthy, and sustainable is getting more difficult due to rising environmental degradation, climate change, and population expansion. Food is necessary for human existence, and its nutrition balance is necessary for people’s health and happiness.
People’s perceptions of food intake have shifted considerably as society and technology have progressed, and the desire for food has shifted from fundamental “ensure supply” to “nutrition and health.”
Synthetic biology has risen in recent years as a science that combines biological studies and engineering principles. In addition, the advancement allows for the creation of cells that may be employed in food production.
Renewable raw resources may be converted into vital food components, useful food additives, and nutritional compounds using these designed cells. Synthetic biology has the power to transform the food industry in the future.
Synthetic biology can re-imagine agriculture’s future by speeding up the development of next-generation yeast and crop manufacturing platforms that are suited to specific demands.
Enhancing Food Production and Manufacturing
Traditional agricultural and husbandry-based food production methods are being transformed and reformed thanks to synthetic biology, which will enhance land-use efficiency, conserve water, and eliminate the usage of pesticides and fertilizers.
Furthermore, the synthetic biology-based food production system is less impacted by unpredictable environmental conditions and is simpler to implement to meet high-quality requirements.
Additionally, synthetic biology has the potential to revolutionize current, well-established fermented food production processes. For example, by employing engineered hop yeast, the beer industry may shift away from its reliance on farmed hops.
Applying Synthetic Biology Strategies in Food and Agricultural Procedures
Following are the reasons to employ synthetic biology in food and agricultural production:
- Enhancing the food’s quality, quantity, and hygiene
- Enabling the generation of food in microbes that were previously only possible in plants and animals
- Developing new food kinds or components with therapeutic properties or longer shelf lives
- Development of more environment–friendly and effective plant growth treatments, herbicides, and fertilizers that can adapt to select environmental or organismal circumstances and targets
- Reducing the environmental effect of traditional agricultural and food production systems
- Lowering production costs that help farmers, producers, and manufacturers save time and money
Synthetic biology aids producers in managing agricultural yields and improving disease and insect resistance, resulting in higher yields and profits. In the food sector, synthetic biology increases the efficiency of existing food production processes, enhances the nutritive value of manufactured foods, and improves food safety.
Farmers all over the world have increasingly embraced cost-effective biological methods to promote healthy and complete crop growth while lowering operating expenses. Synthetic biology in agriculture.