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Crop Biotech Update

Biosafety of GMO Workshop in Egypt

June 22, 2012

A one-day workshop on Biosafety of GMOs was held on June 9, 2012 at the Faculty of Agriculture, Cairo University for 130 specialists in the field of biotechnology and food safety. The first in a series organized by the Egyptian Biotechnology Information Center (EBIC), the workshop aimed at enhancing participants' understanding of the key principles of biosafety and risk assessment of genetically modified organisms (GMOs).

Experts included Dr. Ahmed Naguib Sharaf, Dean of the Faculty of Agriculture, Cairo University; Prof. Hussein Mansour, Head of the National Authority for Food Safety, Ministry of Trade and Industry; Dr. Mohammad Abdul Ghani Roudhan, Deputy Director of Quality Management and Development Office of the Prime Minister; and Dr. Salah Soliman, Advisor of Bibliotica Alexandrina. The following recommendations were forwarded after the round table discussion with experts:

  • The application of biotechnology and the use of GMOs are no longer options but necessary.
  • Transparency between researchers, stakeholders and decision-makers regarding biosafety and risk assessment is needed for accurate information dissemination.
  • There is need to raise awareness regarding GMOs and biosafety among members of the community through media, seminars in schools and public libraries,universities as well as in the rural communities.
  • Institutional biosafety committees in different universities and research institutes working with biotechnology must be reactivated.
  • Private sector should participate in using GM technology to develop Egyptian agriculture.

For more on this workshop, visit the EBIC website at http://www.e-bic.net or contact Dr. Naglaa Abdallah at nabdallah@e-bic.net