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Table 1 Raw list of the opportunities and challenges extracted for transgenic products

From: Challenges and opportunities of transgenic agricultural products in Iran: convergence of perspectives using Delphi technique

Row Extracted concepts for opportunities
1 Like natural herbs, transgenic plants completely decompose and return to nature
2 Increasing growth of transgenic plants around the world is an indicator of their acceptance by farmers
3 Having natural and beneficial genes is the main distinction between transgenic plants and other plants
4 The technology of transgenic plants supports sustainable agriculture development goals
5 Transgenic foods are healthy and like ordinary foods are considered safe to eat
6 Transgenic plants reduce the use of pesticides and thus contribute to protection of environment
7 Cultivation of transgenic plants preserves biodiversity
8 Production of transgenic plants boosts resistance to pests and diseases
9 Transgenic plants help control weeds
10 Cultivation of transgenic plants minimizes pesticide residues in food products and environment
11 Cultivation of transgenic plants can lead to soil protection
12 Transgenic plants reduce the negative environmental impacts of agricultural activities
13 Population growth and nutritional needs of human beings reflect the necessity of producing transgenic plants
14 Transgenic technology is in progress and provides new opportunities for agricultural production
15 Increasing agricultural production, boosting economic profits, and eliminating poverty are among the benefits of transgenic plants
16 Transgenic products have higher nutritional value than other plants
Row Extracted concepts for challenges
1 There is no consensus among experts on the usage of transgenic products
2 Lack of consensus on potential risks of transgenic plants has prevented the massive production of these products
3 Resistance of consumers has prevented the spread of transgenic plants in some countries (including Iran)
4 Resistance of politicians in some countries (like Iran) has limited the spread of transgenic plants
5 Production of transgenic plants in Iran is unnecessary and traditional breeding methods can meet future food needs
6 Lack of an educational, research, and development System (ERDS) is a significant barrier for development of this new technology
7 Production of transgenic plants destroys valuable resources and resists pests
8 Transgenic plants produce damage to other species (non-target species)
9 Lack of an enabling environment for private sectors’ activity has led to slow growth and development of transgenic products in agricultural sector
10 Lack of awareness of consumers and manufacturers about the features of transgenic technology is an obstacle for its development
11 Lack of educators and knowledgeable specialists in development of transgenic plants is one of the main challenges in this area
12 The use of transgenic plants can create risks for human reproduction and fertility
13 The use of transgenic plants may lead to resistance to antibiotics
14 The use of transgenic plants may cause tumors (cancer) and allergies in individuals
15 Managerial systems, regulatory agencies, and controllers of transgenic plant production are faced with major problems in Iran
16 The process of generating knowledge and technology on transgenic plants is very slow in Iran
17 Little attention of authorities to production of transgenic plants reduces the rate of productivity and increases the need for resources of energy
18 Lack of familiarity with methods, goals, and results of genetic engineering causes people to be concerned about the acceptance of transgenic plants
19 Due to the political issues and deficiencies in planning, the production of transgenic plants has faced with some problems
20 The risky dimensions of transgenic plants are certainly not proven and these negative impacts should not be ignored
21 Administrative bureaucracy is one of the main problems of transgenic plants’ development
22 Inconspicuous role of the mass media in introducing the achievements of transgenic technology has led to backwardness of this technology
23 Lack of accurate statistical information on transgenic plants has prevented the growth of this area
24 The country’s inappropriate customs rules are of main barriers for development of this new technology
25 Non-certification of the use of transgenic products by recognized scientific and research authorities is one of the weaknesses in their application