By Ginika Okoye
Abuja – The All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN) has called on farmers across the country to adopt the genetically modified (GM) technology, saying it is not geared toward pushing them out of business.
The National President of the association, Mr Ike Ubaka, made the call in an interview with newsmen in Abuja on Friday.
Ubaka was reacting to assertions that adopting GM technology had adverse effects on humans and discourages patronage of the conventional agricultural crops.
He explained that the technology was aimed at making food more available, affordable and accessible.
According to him, Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) yields are higher than our traditional crops and the major wish of every farmer is to go to the field and get bumper harvests.
“This genetically manipulation has nothing to do with our health but for the sake of food security, that is why GMOs are produced. Whether you like it or not, that we are aware today does not mean that it started today.
“There is no chemical attached to genetically modified foods. Nobody is going to push the farmers off from business rather it will make our yields better, which will make for a commanding price in the market.
“All these are technological advancement, tissue culture, biotechnology and they should not scare us,’’ Ubaka said.
The national president expressed regrets that farmers were not adequately sensitised and trained on developments of emerging technologies in agriculture.
He said that adequate sensitisation, would enhance the productivity of the small scale farmers.
Ubaka said the development had resulted in low productivity and lack of skills among farmers, and urged the government to step up its training for farmers across the country to make them aware of current trends in agriculture.
He, however, called on the Federal and state governments to equip and support research institutes and Colleges of Agriculture in the country to promote professionalism in agriculture.
(Edited by Ekemini Ladejobi//Felix Nwadioha