Are GM products good for consumption in Nigeria? By Dr. Rose Gidado

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All over the world, human beings and animals have consumed GM foods for two decades. Based on the available scientific evidence, there is no difference between GM and non-GM foods.
Nigeria has a biosafety law, but no GM crops have been commercialized (as yet). To ensure the safety of Nigeria food systems, as well as the environment, stringent laws govern the importation of GM material, whether for research purposes or for consumption.
In general, GM foods approved and consumed elsewhere in the world – by human beings and animals – would be equally safe, regardless of the weather. But their importation would have to be in line with Nigeria’s laws.
Government policies support safe and regulated GMOs which require to be labelled as per the National Biosafety Management Agency Act 2015. There are import and export control plans/measures in place even though Nigeria has not yet commenced commercial import and export of GMOs.
While farmers under the umbrella of All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN) and the cotton stakeholders support the technology, those who oppose GMOs are part of an international network of environmental activists and NGOs. Their main concerns are related to safety and the monopoly of trans-national private companies.

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