The Minister of Innovation Science and Technology, Uche Nnaji, has said that agricultural biotechnology will address Nigeria’s food insecurity challenges.
According to him, the National Biotechnology Development Agency, through this technology has genetically modified agro products which now gave high yields.
He urged farmers and other stakeholders in the agric sector to embrace biotechnology to improve food security in the country.
In a statement, Nnaji noted that biotechnology is a transformative force that holds immense potential to address some of the most pressing challenges facing the country and the world at large.
“From healthcare to agriculture, energy to environment, biotechnology offers solutions that can significantly impact the well-being of our citizens and the sustainability of our resources,” he said.
He made these assertions during a recent facility tour of NABDA.
The minister highlighted that NABDA in collaboration with other national and international partners had made recent progress in genetic technology, with the release of Pod Borer Resistant Beans (Cowpea), and the deregulation of TELA maize for commercial use.
He stated that TELA maize, which is a drought-tolerant and insect-resistant species, would provide protection against drought, stem borers, fall army worms, boosting nigeria’s maize supply.
“I am profoundly encouraged by this feat and shall work with NABDA and other relevant agriculture and food security stakeholders to ensure that most Nigerian grain farmers have low-cost access to this uniquely innovated and highly profitable maize variety,” he added.
Recently, the International Monetary Fund listed Nigeria as one of the countries with the lowest level of food security in the world.
“The spillover effects of the war in Ukraine, which have been transmitted mainly through higher domestic food prices, worsened the effects of the pandemic, particularly on the most vulnerable— with Nigeria being among the countries with the lowest food security,” he said.