Crop Biotech Update

Journalist and Experts Promote Biotech to Attain Food Security

July 11, 2018

Experts say that if mankind embraces biotechnology, hunger would be conquered as the productivity of GM crops is estimated to be 7-20% higher than traditional crops, and 33% higher than organic crops. This was emphasized by Obike Ukoh, a Nigerian journalist, in his article in The Tide.

Ukoh discussed the Malthusian Theory of Population wherein Malthus argued that when the population becomes higher than the availability of food, many people will die due to food shortage. When this situation occurs (dubbed as the Malthusian catastrophe), the natural course is that the population level will go back to a ‘sustainable level'. To prevent this catastrophe from happening, scientists continue to strive to boost agricultural production to attain food security. One of the proven solutions to boost crop productivity for food is biotechnology. However, campaigns against the technology are blocking its progress.

Ukoh quoted experts' statements on biotech in his article. "What we are having is ignorance; that's where education comes in," said Prof. Akinola Hassan, a professor of genetics at Uthman Danfodio University, Sokoto, one of the speakers at the Open Forum on Agricultural Biotechnology held in Abeokuta recently. Prof. Hassan described the campaign against GM food as mere propaganda. "GMOs don't kill, they are not dangerous to health; the Federal Government is talking about green alternatives. They are saying that they want foods to be produced in a safe manner; and that can be achieved through the use of GMO," Prof. Hassan added.

Read the rest of the article from the Genetic Literacy Project.