The key difference between golden rice and normal rice is that golden rice is a genetically modified rice which contains a high amount of beta-carotene and other provitamin A carotenoids while normal rice contains no beta-carotene, and no vitamin A.
Rice is the staple diet in many countries, particularly in Asia. White rice or normal rice does not contain beta carotene and other provitamin A carotenoids. Dietary vitamin A deficiency is one of the most significant causes of childhood blindness. It also reduces the human body’s ability to fight common diseases. Vitamin A deficiency is particularly severe in countries where rice is the staple food. Golden rice is a genetically engineered rice variety created by adding two genes to produce and accumulate beta carotene and other provitamin A carotenoids. Golden rice is safe for the environment to grow and safe for human and animal consumption.
1. Overview and Key Difference
2. What is Golden Rice
3. What is Normal Rice
4. Similarities Between Golden Rice and Normal Rice
5. Side by Side Comparison – Golden Rice vs Normal Rice in Tabular Form
What is Golden Rice?
Golden rice is a genetically engineered rice variety which produces rice with a goldish-yellowish tint, plentiful with Vitamin A (β-carotene). Beta carotene is responsible for the colour of golden rice. Golden rice was developed in order to reduce vitamin A deficiency in people who consume rice as their main food. Golden rice grain has a high amount of beta carotene, which is a precursor of vitamin A. It also contains other provitamin A carotenoids. The composition of other nutrients in golden rice is similar to normal rice.
Though golden rice is a transgenic crop, it is safe to grow in the environment and safe to human consumption. Golden rice provides many health benefits. Consumption of golden rice reduces the cases of partial and complete blindness and deaths. Genes from maize and a common soli bacterium are introduced to golden rice using recombinant DNA technology. Other development stages are similar to conventional plant breeding.
What is Normal Rice?
Rice is an edible cereal grain which is scientifically known as Oryza sativa. Half of the world eat rice as their staple food. Rice grain contains high starch content. Hence, it is a good carbohydrate energy source. Most people prefer to eat white rice, but there are brown rice and red rice as well.
Rice plant is an annual plant which is a monocot. However, normal rice does not contain vitamin A. Beta carotene is the precursor for vitamin A. Vitamin A deficiency occurs in people who eat normal rice. However, normal rice is an excellent source of energy.
What are the Similarities Between Golden Rice and Normal Rice?
- The composition of golden rice and normal rice is the same except for β-carotene.
- The taste of golden rice and normal rice is the same.
- Golden rice is safe for consumption, similar to normal rice.
- The cost of both rice is similar.
- Both are planted, grown, processed and cooked in the same way.
- Both golden rice and normal rice are a good source of carbohydrate energy.
What is the Difference Between Golden Rice and Normal Rice?
Golden rice is a genetically modified rice variety which produces grains containing a high amount of beta carotene while normal rice does not contain beta carotene. So, this is the key difference between golden rice and normal rice. Moreover, another difference between golden rice and normal rice is their colour. Golden rice is yellow or golden in colour while the normal rice is white in colour.
The below infographic tabulates the differences between golden rice and normal rice.
Summary – Golden Rice vs Normal Rice
Golden rice is a genetically modified rice variety developed as a solution for vitamin A deficiency. Vitamin A deficiency is a major public health problem. Golden rice contains a high amount of beta carotene and other provitamin A carotenoids. Normal rice does not contain beta carotene and vitamin A. But both golden rice and normal rice have the same nutrient composition of fibre, sugars, fatty acids, amino acids, vitamins, minerals, proximates, and anti-nutrients. Thus, this summarizes the difference between golden rice and normal rice.
1. Adrian Dubock ORCID: orcid.org/0000-0001-9429-84231. “Golden Rice: Instructions for Use.” Agriculture & Food Security, BioMed Central, 6 Oct. 2017, Available here.
1. “Golden Rice” By International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) – (CC BY 2.0) via Commons Wikimedia
2. “2014 uncooked Thai jasmine rice” By Takeaway – Own work (CC BY-SA 4.0) via Commons Wikimedia
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