12 July 2013

Nigeria: 'Country to Cultivate GM Crops in Commercial Quantity Soon'

Nigerians will begin to cultivate genetically modified (GM) crops in commercial quantity very soon, the National Biotechnology Development Agency (NABDA) has said.

NABDA's Director General Prof Bamidele Solomon, said contrary to expectation, many Nigerians have embraced agricultural biotechnology and a lot of farmers are ready for GM farming in the country.

Solomon, who spoke in Abuja at the 10th anniversary seminar of the Agricultural Technology Foundation (AATF), said biotech is no longer viewed by Nigerian farmers through the lens of suspicion and uncertainty but has been wholeheartedly accepted by many of them.

Prof Solomon said the new agric technology would create a food secure Nigeria if many more farmers embraced it. But it is gladdening that the Nigerian people are becoming more open to the technology and its numerous benefits and applications, the NABDA DG said, adding that its impact will be immeasurable.

More success will be recorded by the country in the area of food security if the passed biosafety bill is signed by President Goodluck Jonathan, he noted.

He said with law in place, a lot of international agencies would brings in development projects that would impact positively on Nigerians.

"Having a law will ensure the safe use of modern biotechnology while protecting human health, the environment and national biodiversity.

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