Nairobi, 4 October 2019 – Responding to the news that Kenya is closer to commercialising the Genetically Modified (GMO) cotton (Bt Cotton), Greenpeace Africa’s Food for Life Campaigner Claire Nasike has said:

“The push for GMO crops represent a corporate takeover of our food system. GMOs block the real solutions coming from sustainable farming that is addressing the impacts of climate change being felt by farmers and people all over the world.

“While it is important to revive the textile industry in Kenya,  KALRO and other government agencies should look at encouraging farmers in Kenya to grow conventional cotton varieties that use organic and sustainable ways of control bollworm.

“ Bt cotton has failed in countries such as Burkina Faso where it was introduced in 2008. Burkinabe farmers stopped growing it sighting high seed prices and poor quality as compared to the conventional cotton. Kenya’s government must protect small scale cotton growers instead of giving the big industrial corporations the power to put profits before farmers and the environment.

“Greenpeace Africa urges the government of Kenya to maintain the ban on GMOs. They should invest in sustainable models of agriculture such as ecological farming.  Ecological farming combines local farmers’ knowledge with the most recent scientific knowledge to create new technologies and practices that increase yields without negatively impacting the environment. Ecological farming increases farmers’ income, promote diversity, build resilience and ultimately food security for the benefit of Kenya’s people and the empowerment of local farmers.”

Media Contact:

Hellen Dena,  Communications Officer,  hdena@greenpeace.org, + 254 717 104 144