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Agency approves cultivation trials for GMO maize

The National Biosafety Authority (NBA) has authorised national field cultivation trials for GMO maize.

In a statement well-received by pro-GMO organisations that contend that Kenya’s population demand for food can best be met via adoption of GMO products, NBA chief executive Dr Willy Tonui said the approval only allowed for strictly field trials.

The National Biosafety Authority chief executive Willy Tonui. PHOTO | FILE


Lobby develops high-yield maize variety

By Munene Kamau

A non-governmental organisation has developed a maize variety which could increase production and ensure food security.

The Integrated Community Organisation for Sustainable Empowerment and Education for Development (Icoseed) in corroboration with the Kenya Agricultural Research and Livestock Organization(Karlo) has developed water-efficient maize, which can survive and produce high yields under harsh climatic conditions.


WEMA celebrates successes at annual meeting

The receipt of the Notre Dame Global Adaptation Index (ND-GAIN) Corporate Award in December 2013, a record number of released maize varieties in Africa, commercialisation and harvesting of the first drought-tolerant conventional maize hybrid by smallholder farmers in Kenya were some of key achievements that were highlighted and celebrated at the Water Efficient Maize for Africa (WEMA) Project’s 6th annual review and planning meeting that was held in Entebbe, Uganda in February 2014.


Here comes drought-tolerant hybrid maize varieties

On January 10 this year, Water Efficient Maize for Africa (WEMA) project in Tanzania, in collaboration with the Commission for Science and Technology (COSTECH) and the Ministry for Agriculture, Food Security and Cooperative through its department of Research Development (DRD) demonstrated new three drought tolerant hybrid maize varieties to seed companies. Correspondent, GERALD KITABU interviewed WEMA project manager, Dr. Sylvester Oikeh, on various issues concerning the project. Excerpts:


First WEMA Project Bt maize trials harvested in Kenya

Following the decision in 2011 to include insect-pest resistance in the drought-tolerant maize varieties being developed by the Water Efficient Maize for Africa (WEMA) Project, the first maize trials with the Bt trait were harvested in Kenya in May 2013.


WEMA products now available for licensing

The next product offer from WEMA will be posted by mid-March 2013

Please follow this link (http://wema.aatf-africa.org/stewardship/products-commercialisation-and-licensing-program) for details and application.


Inflation Forces Kasese Farmers to Raise Prices


By Lominda Afedraru, 21 September 2011

Inflation is not only affecting at consumers but farmers as well. Farmers in Kasese district, growing various food items at Mubuku irrigation scheme and elsewhere, have been forced to increase prices of their produce by Shs200 from an already agreed price as a result of a price influx in the country.

Mr Frank Twinamatsiko, the chairperson of Basajjakweyamba Cooperative Society - Mubuku Irrigation Scheme Ltd, said farmers are unhappy about the price increases.


Region to benefit from $45M drought tolerant maize project


By Ben Omondi

NAIROBI---Three East African Community (EAC) member states – Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania – are among five sub-Saharan Africa countries set to benefit from a five-year $ 49 million project funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to develop maize varieties that can grow using less water.


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Gates reassures support for maize, cassava projects


Studies on maize and cassava cultivation projects are set to make progress, thanks to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation pledge to continue supporting them.

The support for the two projects as well as other scientific researches under the Commission for Science and Technology (COSTECH), were made by American billionaire Mr Bill Gates, during talks at the State House with President Jakaya Kikwete on Wednesday.



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