INDUSTRY: Multinational companies are pushing the government to approve genetically modified organisms (GMOs) so as to gain control of the multi-billion-shilling seed industry.
Organisations that promote food rights, said the seed industry is likely to be faced with serious challenges if the government gives in to pressure to approve GM technology.
They said should this happen farmers would be introduced to foreign seeds which, to a large extent, would also be dangerous to indigenous foods.
Route to Food Initiative, Kenya Biodiversity Coalition, Africa Biodiversity Network and Greenpeace Africa said GMOs will not solve food insecurity issues in the country, adding that the move to introduce the genetically modified organism is meant to serve interests of the global firms.
“The multinationals seek to introduce their seeds into the local agriculture sector and thus kill indigenous foods,” Kenya Biodiversity Coalition National Coordinator Anne Maina claimed.
Equally, she added, local companies developing seeds based on the local climate conditions would be edged out of business.
Representatives of the four organisations, speaking yesterday at a joint media conference in Nairobi said the multinationals, some of which are already operating in the country have been quietly pushing for the privatisation of Kenya Seed Company (KSC) to ease their entry into the local seed market.
“Once KSC has been privatised, promoters of GMO will be in a position to use local companies to sell their seeds,” Maina said. KSC is mandated to research, develop, market and avail certified top quality, high yielding agricultural seeds of various varieties in Kenya and the region