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Stakeholders from Africa visit Bt cotton fields in India

October 2nd, 2015 / ISAAA, US

Delegates from 29 East and South African cotton growing countries participate in a week long study tour to Bt cotton fields in India from September 27 to October 2, 2015. The “Seeing is believing” study tour is being conducted by the South Asia Biotechnology Centre (SABC), New Delhi, in …

Addressing GMO misinformation in Africa

September 25th, 2015 / SciDev.net, UK

Ella Nyakunu, a South Africa-based manager of a project helping to articulate biosafety and biotechnology issues around agriculture in Southern Africa recalls how people in her home country, Zimbabwe, tease her each time she goes there. There’s a chance for scientists who deal with GM technology to explain to …

South Africa: GM corn, soy & cotton OK but not potato

September 25th, 2015 / AFK Insider, US

South Africa has rejected genetically modified potatoes for commercial production, raising questions about a double standard that allows GM corn, cotton and soy to be grown and sold there. See …

Resistance to GM comes from people who have not known hunger

September 21st, 2015 / El País, Spain

“Scientists must engage more with the public. The problem with GM food is that the public is not aware that for centuries have been doing genetic modification, albeit very random way: crossing different strains or, for many years, with mutagenesis [generating mutations] crops and subsequent selection of the most …

Pest-resistant maize opens technological advancement

September 11th, 2015 / The Nation, Kenya

Professor Calestous Juma writes: Agricultural biotechnology critics are right to question the potential negative impact of the global dominance of the technology. However, they are wrong to assume that all the biotechnology introduced in emerging nations is driven by the interests of foreign firms.Kenya is on the cusp of becoming …

Nitrogen use efficient rice shows yield increase of 30 %

September 10th, 2015 / Market Watch, US

Major yield increase has the potential to change the economics of rice production and enhance food security. Four years of field trials with a leading line of Nitrogen Use Efficient (NUE) rice have demonstrated an average 30 percent yield increase over conventional controls. These results were reported jointly today by …

An African plant breeder’s opinion on GMOs

September 8th, 2015 / Biology Fortified, US

A modern-day plant breeder uses many different techniques. Transgenic technology (aka GMOs) can precisely change the genetics of a plant. While there are unproven fears about GMO safety, this technology could decrease the death toll from malnutrition. What is the perception of GMOs in the developing world? …

Kenyan Farmers raise concerns over GMO maize

September 8th, 2015 / The Star, Kenya

Farmers in Makueni last week got a chance to ask questions and voice their concerns on genetically modified maize. Peninah Mutunga, a farmer from Kathonzweni in Makueni county, Kenya, has had many questions since she first heard of genetically modified organisms. “Will the GM maize be labelled so that when …

Ghana to commercialize GM crops in three years

September 7th, 2015 / Ghana Business News

Despite the sustained campaign against the introduction of commercial genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in Ghana, including a protracted legal battle, Ghana is likely to commercialize GMOs in three years, according to information sourced by Ghana Business News. Early this year, Food Sovereignty Ghana (FSG) a food advocacy organisation, sued the …

Building better crops from the bottom up

September 7th, 2015 / Global Food Security, UK

Plant breeding using classical, top-down or forward genetic approaches has served us well in the millennia since people settled in agricultural communities and started crossing plants, selecting individuals with traits that made farming easier and the edible parts more nutritious. An alternative to top-down genetic crop improvement is the so …