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Ghana approves pest-resistant modified beans

Dried Common Bean
Ghana
Published Aug 18, 2022

Tridge summary

At the end of June, the National Biosafety Agency of Ghana approved the commercial use of event 709A of transgenic cowpea, a variety that makes this crop resistant to the marujo das podas, a pest insect that can reduce bean productivity by between 20 and 80% .

Original content

Better known as PBR cowpea, this legume variety was developed by the Savana Agricultural Research Institute (SARI) from a native seed and has been evaluated for approval by Ghana since 2016, when they started their experimental cultivations. Now, SARI has said that this and all varieties developed from this technology will be considered public goods. This bean variety was first cultivated in Nigeria in 2019. There, farmers reported increases in production of up to 20%. In addition, another benefit of PBR cowpea is that, while conventional varieties need to be sprayed between 8 and 12 times in their three-month cycle, transgenic cowpea needs only two applications of agrochemicals per planting season. It is a staple food for over 200 million families in sub-Saharan Africa. However, although Ghana produces around 57,000 tonnes of food annually, this is insufficient for the country's minimum consumption of around 169,000 tonnes. This forces the country to import beans from countries ...
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