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January 31st, 2019 / Xinhua, China

At fresh produce markets across Kenya, citizens are shunning buying bigger tomatoes, mangoes, pawpaws or oranges for fear that they may be genetically modified.

The fear is extended to even poultry products where chickens that are too big are classified as genetically modified organisms by consumers and shunned therefore.

The misconception is widespread across the East African nation that fresh produce traders and even supermarkets avoid stocking such products.

“I stopped selling those excessively big tomatoes or mangoes because each buyer who would come here would ask if they are genetically modified,” Grace Mutuku, a vegetable seller in the eastern Nairobi, said on Tuesday, adding that besides the misconception, the high cost of such produce also puts off buyers.

As Kenya readies to introduce genetically modified cotton this year, agricultural experts are calling for increased public awareness of what the products are about if the fear is to be eliminated. Read more