Many countries do not allow the cultivation or consumption of crops that have been developed using biotechnologies such as genetically modified crops, otherwise known as GMOs. One of them has been Kenya, but from today henceforth, the state will allow the cultivation of the same.
At the same time, Kenya has also announced that the importation ban on GMO crops and animal feeds has been lifted.
“The decision effectively lifts restrictions on the cultivation and importation of GMO crops in the country,” says a statement from the State House of Kenya.
GMOs have had their share of bad PR, but that is because many people have been misinformed about them. There are scientific publications that have debunked many myths associated with genetically modified crops, but still, people have their reservations, and would rather stick to crops that have not been modified using any biotechnologies.
One of the major concerns has been that GMOs cause health issues, including susceptibility to cancer-related diseases. This is, however, not true, because some countries such as Canada have had their people and animals consume GMOs, and not one case of sickness has even been reported. It basically means that they do not pose any risk to animal or human health.
Others have also been misinformed that GMOs do not have as many nutrients as natural foods, but scientific research has reported that the former crops are as healthy as traditional crops.
Another issue has been that GMOs are basically modern crops, and not a lot of scientific research has been put into them to determine if they will be safe over an extended period, probably spanning decades or centuries. However, the scientific world, including credible bodies such as the WHO, and United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization have since supported the safety of genetically modified crops.
Of course, it will not be easy to convince Kenyans to use GM crops because as we have come to learn, it is very hard for people to dispel their doubts when they have already made up their minds. Scientific research doesn’t matter to them because they have already been convinced that the crops will somehow harm their health.