Africa has the most to gain from embracing crop biotechnology, yet the continent’s farmers are still largely denied access to GMO crops. The bottlenecks are political, not scientific, as African agricultural technology groups are developing vitamin-fortified and pest-resistant crops that remained locked away at research institutions.
Much of the anti-biotech sentiment in Africa traces its roots to US and European activist groups that flood the continent with disturbing disinformation, warning consumers that GMO crops cause cancer and infertility. On this episode of Talking Biotech, biologist Jennifer Thomson, a leading voice for biotechnology and women’s rights in Africa, joins University of Florida plant scientist Kevin Folta to discuss the ongoing struggle to get biotechnology to the people who stand to benefit most from its implementation.
Jennifer Thomson is a molecular biologist at the University of Cape Town in South Africa. She helped draft South Africa ‘s National Biotechnology Strategy and was appointed by the Minister of Science and Technology to the National Advisory Council on Innovation.
The Talking Biotech podcast, produced by Kevin Folta, is available for listening or subscription: