The University of Ghana hosted an International Forum on Agricultural Transformation, focusing on strategies to ensure enhanced food security on the African continent. The forum aimed to bring together stakeholders from the agricultural sector to discuss innovative approaches and necessary changes to address the challenges faced in achieving food security.
Deliberating on Agricultural Sector Transformation
The International Forum on Agricultural Transformation, organized by the West Africa Centre for Crop Improvement (WACCI) in collaboration with Alliance for Science Ghana and Alliance for Science, served as a platform for in-depth discussions on transforming the agricultural sector. Participants explored new ideas and solutions to overcome barriers and enhance food security in Africa.
Exploring Biotech Crops for African Farmers
As part of the symposium, the International Symposium on Agricultural Transformation and Biotech Crops in Africa focused on the deployment of biotechnology tools such as genetically modified organism (GMO) technology and gene editing technology. Experts discussed the potential benefits of these innovative approaches for African farmers and explored ways to effectively utilize biotech crops.
Renowned speakers and experts from various fields, including scientists, government officials, regulators, policy experts, and social and economic analysts, contributed their perspectives to the discussions. The symposium delved into the challenges hindering the adoption of biotechnologies in Africa and debunk prevalent myths surrounding them. The social, cultural, political, and economic consequences of the introduction of new breeding methods were also examined.
The symposium shed light on promising new breeding techniques and scientific innovations in crop improvement. Scientists presented the latest research findings, while social scientists emphasized the importance of interdisciplinary research in creating an enabling environment for GMOs and genome-edited crops in Africa. The event also facilitated discussions on the establishment of self-sustaining public-private partnerships to promote the adoption of biotech crops.
Moreover, the forum emphasized the need for African governments to allocate more resources to research activities on new breeding techniques. These investments are seen as crucial for achieving a healthy and food-secured Africa. The symposium culminated in the issuance of a communique, titled ‘Pathways To Making Africa Food Sufficient,’ which provided recommendations for various stakeholders in the agricultural sector.
By generating a comprehensive body of knowledge, the symposium aimed to guide policymakers, policy implementers, and development partners in adopting effective strategies for achieving food security in Africa through the use of new breeding techniques.