The National Biotechnology Development Agency says the country needs to invest more on Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO) technology to meet the nation’s food demand.
Dr Rose Gidado, the agency’s Deputy Director, said in Lagos that Nigeria‘s GMO technology level stood at between one and three percent.
Gidado said that Nigeria was not making use of technology in creating genetically modified crops hence the huge deficit in food production.
According to her, our population is getting larger everyday and the food demand also keeps increasing.
“How then do we get the much food that we need for our people?. There is no farming you will do now that will not use fertiliser.
“No matter how good the fertiliser is, the seed must be good also and If you don’t have quality seed, then you cannot not have good yields.
“GMO seed if invested and embraced, will give you increased yields to feed the nation,” she said.
The deputy director noted that agriculture was all about having good seed, adding that GMO seeds are of good quality, improved and safe for consumption.
She further said that GMOs crops are the special seeds in the history of mankind and they are safe.
“GMOs are highly modified seeds and have never caused any challenge to anyone. We have to really carry out a lot research to ensure that what you have developed is good for human consumption.
“It is just the way drugs are developed that the seeds are developed too. It has to go through lots of testing.
“The modified seeds, once they are developed, we have to test to ensure that what you have come up with will not harm any human being.
“GMOs goes through a lot of regulations, it is highly regulated. Safety is not compromised at all.
“When you see that a genetically modified crop have come up and ready for commercialisation, be rest assured that it is safe,’’ she said.
Gidado added that any crop that is not safe would not be commercialised because of safety issues.