Kenya conducting field trials on GMO maize, sorghum, cassava, cotton

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The National Biosafety Authority (NBA) and the Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organisation (Kalro) have been conducting confined trials for various crops aimed at easing the hunger pangs while creating new avenues for Kenyans to earn money through propagating genetically modified seeds and commercial planting of Kenya’s staple foods.

BT maize was the latest to be released for national field trials, which will see new varieties chosen for eventual release to individual farms.

The new variety that has shown encouraging resilience in semi-arid areas has shown resistance to insects and drought-tolerance capabilities resulting in high yields.

These attributes, technologists say, could produce higher yields at a cheaper rate since farmers would apply less amounts of pesticides, leading to healthier food crops with low chemical residual levels.

Confined field trials for transgenic sorghum containing pro-vitamin A and enhanced iron and zinc bio-availability. . .that will address reported developmental challenges among children.

. . . .

The Virus Resistant Cassava for Africa project aims to develop improved cassava varieties resistant to the cassava brown streak and cassava mosaic diseases. . .

The National Biosafety and Appeals Board is closely monitoring Bt cotton, which was released for national field trial last year after it showed positive gains at confined field trials.

 . . . .

And with the advent of GM high-yielding and disease-resistant varieties, Kenya could be on the way to turning unproductive parcels of land into arable lands where emerging new companies will launch operations to propagate the new varieties.

Read full, original post: Kenyan researchers step up trials for genetically altered crops in bid to fight hunger

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