Tanzania becomes a battleground in fight over genetically modified crops

07.10.2013

Washington Post

Published 7 October 2013

(...) Of 19 alliance members, 11 are European-based groups or have European affiliations. The expert authority the alliance cites for claims about GM crops is from London-based Earth Open Source.

Beyond grass-roots activism, Europeans have profoundly influenced African attitudes by rejecting GM crops, Ndunguru said.

“People go to the Internet, and they read the information put there by European anti-GM groups, and they ask, ‘If this technology is safe, why don’t the Europeans use it?’ ” he said.

Now, some experts are accusing European activists of placing ideology above Africa’s food security.

“Opposition to biotechnology in Africa started before there was much scientific research on the subject outside South Africa. So Africa’s first import was opposition to the technology before the products got there,” said Calestous Juma, a Harvard University professor of international development and a native Kenyan. “This was because the [European Union] constructed a resistance industry and exported it through a variety of channels.”

The full article is available here.