Kenya poised to greenlight GMO disease-resistant cassava cultivation to protect key food source

Nicksonn Muturi cassava

Kenya is planning to green-light the cultivation and sale of genetically modified cassava in a move to improve food security in the country.

The Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO) is working to introduce a GMO variety of cassava reported to be more disease resistant than traditional strains …. KALRO says the GMO cassava strain has high levels of disease resistance and will result in more marketable yields for farmers.

“Farmers and consumers will benefit from CBSD resistant cassava as a result of increased cassava root quality and marketable yield,” said the notice in part. [In 2019] Kenya produced 973,000 tones of cassava all of which was sold and consumed in the country. According to the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO), cassava is a crucial food crop for African countries since the crop is hardy and can be cultivated without mechanization or costly inputs like fertilizer.

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