African scientists push governments to embrace GMOs to address fall armyworm crop losses

south africa corn
A farmer inspects his maize crop at his farm in South Africa

Over 17 million people in Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan and Uganda have reached emergency food insecurity levels, according to the [Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO)].

“Maize is an important food crop in many African countries and the inability of local varieties to withstand the growing threats from the fall armyworm which can destroy an entire crop in a matter of weeks raises significant concerns,” Hilda Mukui, an agriculturalist and conservationist in Kenya, told IPS.

According to experts, sectors such as the poultry industry that relies heavily on maize to produce poultry feed have also been affected.

Within this context, scientists are now pushing African governments to embrace biotechnology to address the many threats that are currently facing the agricultural sector and leading to the alarming food insecurity.

According to the African Agricultural Technology Foundation, a genetically modified variety of maize has shown significant resistance to the fall armyworm.

Based on results from the Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis) maize trials in Uganda, scientists are convinced that there is an immediate and sufficient solution to the fall armyworm.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion and analysis. Read full, original post: Biotechnology Part of the Solution to Africa’s Food Insecurity, Scientists Say

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