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Building stakeholder understanding and uptake of agricultural biotechnology in Africa
Biotechnology advances, including genetic engineering, are reshaping agriculture and improving food security, economies, the environment and public health. However, agricultural biotechnology is a relatively misunderstood science, especially in Africa. As with most new ideas, cutting through the myths and misinformation is a daunting but necessary task, which if not handled well can roll back any advantages inherent in the technology.
As African leaders strive to make informed decisions on biotech for their countries, the raging debate between proponents and opponents of biotechnology where scientific facts are often mixed with social, ethical and political considerations cause confusion. In the face of a rapidly growing population, declining agricultural productivity, climate change and reduced resources available for agricultural research, policy makers are pressed to make the right decisions and are looking for guidance.
The Open Forum on Agricultural Biotechnology in Africa (OFAB) Project facilitates constructive conversations among key stakeholders and decision makers on agricultural biotechnology. For both policy makers and the larger public, OFAB facilitates quality engagements and conversations on the safety and benefits of modern biotechnology
OFAB, a project of AATF, is funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and is being implemented in seven countries—Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Nigeria, Ghana, Burkina Faso and Ethiopia.
Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation supports the TELA, Open Forum on Agricultural Biotechnology in Africa, QBS, the Hybrid Rice: Breeding by Design projects and has contributed to integrating IT into CAMAP. The Foundation previously supported the WEMA project and also provided core funding for organizational operational support.
Number of OFAB Chapters in Africa - Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Ghana, Burkina Faso and Nigeria
Number of journalists engaged and empowered to report accurately on agricultural biotechnology
Number of countries in Africa that grow GM crops as at 2018 (South Africa, Burkina Faso,…
Hectares of biotech crops planted in 2018 across 26 –countries
AATF [African Agricultural Technology Foundation]. 2018. Analysis of Effects of Ban on Importation of GM Foods on Food Security, Research and Training in Kenya. Nairobi, Kenya: African Agricultural Technology FoundationDownload Resource file
Ojanji, W and D. Otunge. 2017. Media Reporting on Biotechnology: Perspectives from African Journalists. Nairobi, Kenya: African Agricultural Technology Foundation.Download Resource file
AATF. 2017. The Open Forum on Agricultural Biotechnology (OFAB): A Decade of Success, 2006-2016. Nairobi, Kenya: African Agricultural Technology Foundation.Download Resource file
Policy Environment and Public ParticipationDownload Resource file
The Role of Biotechnology in mitigating impacts of drought on maize production in KenyaDownload Resource file
Open Forum on Agricultural Biotechnology in Africa BriefDownload Resource file