Botswana is still developing a policy on genetically modified crops. This is according to the Permanent secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture Dr Micus Chimbombi.
“We are currently working with all stakeholders to develop a policy on genetically modified foods as we have realized the need for it”, he said.
Some experts in the agricultural field are of the opinion that Botswana should follow suit with the rest of the world and allow the use of GM crops to boost food production in the country which will in the end see the country being an exporter of foods. They also believe that ploughing genetically modified crops will see farmer’s production per hectare going up and will help in reduction of crops being attacked by weeds and reduce need for usage of pesticides.
South Africa, which we import most of our food stuffs from, has long adopted GM crops production and results have shown increased food production and reduced need for chemical use to control pests, as well as soil and moisture retention .
On whether the use of GM foods is healthy, they say they are currently eating a lot of imported food made from genetically modified crops and that there is currently no known side effects or cases that have been discovered.
Government has introduced ISPAAD in a bid to improve food production in the country and adoption of GM crops, experts say, can only improve this.