2012 Kenya Agricultural Biotechnology Report

An Expert's View about Agriculture and Animal Husbandry in Kenya

Posted on: 22 Aug 2012

The Government of Kenya’s (GOK) has recently taken additional action on the labeling of agriculture biotechnology that has medium and long-term potential to discourage development.

THIS REPORT CONTAINS ASSESSMENTS OF COMMODITY AND TRADE ISSUES MADE BY USDA STAFF AND NOT NECESSARILY STATEMENTS OF OFFICIAL U.S. GOVERNMENT POLICY Required Report - public distribution Date: 7/16/2012 GAIN Report Number: Kenya Agricultural Biotechnology Annual 2012 Kenya Agricultural Biotechnology Report Approved By: Stephen Hammond Prepared By: FAS/Nairobi Staff Report Highlights: The Government of Kenya’s (GOK) has recently taken additional action on the labeling of agriculture biotechnology that has medium and long-term potential to discourage development of and investment in this historically-new technology and to preclude imports of foods containing genetically-enhanced components. On a positive note, the GOK’s National Biosafety Authority has evaluated registered U.S. genetically-enhanced commodities/products and deemed them safe for human consumption in Kenya. Section I. Executive Summary: The GOK first required the labeling of genetic enhancement (GE) foods, feed, or ingredients in 2010, when the Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS) published regulation KS 2225:2010 that required the identification of GE content on product labels. Kenya’s National Biosafety Authority (NBA) has used the National Biosafety Law 2009, Part IX Section 51, (f) and KS 2225:2010 to insist that U.S. food aid, approved for import by the NBA (please see table here below), carry labels that identify the GE components, even when the consumers of the food will not likely ever see the label. In its most recent foray into regulating GE foods, the GOK, through Kenya Gazette Supplement No. 48 of 2012, Legal Notice No. 40, The Biosafety Act, 2009 (No. 2 of 2009), dated May 25, 2012, incorporated additional requirements on GE-containing foods. KEBS officials, in collaboration with the NBA, proposed D (draft) KS 2225:2012 Genetically Enhanced organisms and derived products- labeling of food and feed –Second Edition, in advance of the above-referenced Gazette notice. The additional restrictions invoked by the Gazette notice include: 1) a reduction of the adventitious presence from five- to-one percent to trigger mandatory labeling when tested using KS ISO 21570: 2005 (Foodstuffs- methods of analysis for detection of genetically enhanced organisms and derived products - Quantitative nucleic acid based methods); 2) permits ―GMO-Free‖ labeling where the GE adventitious presence tests below the one percent threshold; 3) requires that labels present reference to GE content with the same font size used for ingredients, trademarks, etc; and, 4) references the CODEX Standard CAC/GL 76 2011. The mandatory labels and potential penalties may have already altered trade in corn. Reverting to the Biosafety Act 2009, the GOK imposes a fine not exceeding twenty million Kenya Shillings ($235,300) and/or imprisonment not to exceed ten years should someone be found to violate the abovementioned mandatory labeling provisions (or any other Biosafety Law 2009 provision). Previous to implementation of the National Biosafety Law 2009 and mandatory GE labels, Kenyan traders frequently sourced corn from South Africa (reportedly about 70 percent of South African corn contains GE) in times of Kenyan shortfall but now import from non-GE sources, reportedly, to avoid the new GE restrictions. Section II. Plant Biotechnology Trade and Production: The National Biosafety Act 2009 requires that the NBA approve the development and imports of GE commodities/foods. The NBA lists approved confined field trials (CFT), import/transit, and contained use on the following Website: http://ke.biosafetyclearinghouse.net/approvedgmo.shtml. The tables here below present the most recent listings published on the NBA Website noted above. Introduce Name of Re Title of lease Location/Sit d Date App Applicatiolicant Date e of Trial Modified App Remarks roved n (est.) Trait(s) 2018 Application to introduce Transgenic maiz KAR Approval was I, e with given after a Ke wa Kiboko sub- ter thorough risk nya station, Agr efficiency icultura Makindu Water assessment event MON l Research Dist efficiency/ 16th August and the risk rict, 87460 to Institute Mac Drought 2010 management hakos carry out (KARI) C tolerance measures put ounty confined in place were (Eastern field trials found province) under acceptable. moisture stress at Kiboko in Kenya 2015/201 Application 6 to conduct confined Approval was field trial of n after a transgenic KAR giveI Alupe C thorough risk assava Sub-centre, assessment expressing Teso District, KAR and the risk I siRNA and B Virus 18th January usia G5 pr management otein C resistance 2011 ounty measures put for (Western in place were resistance province) found to cassava Mosaic acceptable. Disease in Kenya 2016/201 Application 7 to introduce Approval was transgenic KAR given after a I Alupe cassava Sub-centre, Nutriti thorough risk onal containing Te assessment so District, change; KAR Pro-vitamin I A Busia Vitamin A 18th January and the risk C 2011 management ounty enhanced (DXS+PSY measures put (Western cassava ) genes for in place were province) confined found field trials acceptable. in Kenya 2020 Application to conduct a CFT of transgenic KAR Approval was I, sorghum Kiboko sub given after a - containing thorough risk station, Nutritional pro-vitamin Makindu assessment change; KAR A, I Dist 11th August and the risk rict, Bio- improved Mac 2011 management hakos fortified sorghum C measures put ounty sorghum protein in place were (Eastern quality, found province) digestibility acceptable. , enhanced iron and Zinc availability 2015/201 Application 6 by KARI to conduct Approval was confined field trial of KAR given after a I transgenic Mtwa thorough risk pa cassava C assessment entre, KARI expressing Kikambala Virus 27th April and the risk siRNA for Dist resistance 2012 management rict measures put resistance (Coast in place were to cassava province) found brown acceptable. streak disease in Kenya 2015 Application by KARI to carry out Confined 2003(approve confined Field Trials d by the field trials Na completed. tional KAR of KARI Mwea Insect EnvironmentaI transgenic Centre R Biosafety esistance C l release ommittee cotton for application to that existed insect be submitted then) resistance in 2012 (bollworms ) Approved Genetically Modified Products for Imports and Transit Nam Quantity e of Title of Introduced Date App licant App (Metric lication T Trait (s) App Remarks roved onnes) Applica Approved for human tion to consumption after a import genetically W Insect food safety risk orld Food modified corn- 13th resistance/ assessment concluded Programme soya blend into 1080.00MT September that the product is safe (WFP) Ke Herbicide nya for 2011 tolerance and substantially humanitarian equivalent to the non- assistance modified counterparts Application to Insect 13th Approved for human WFP import genetically 100.00MT resistance/ September consumption after a modified corn- Herbicide 2011 food safety risk soya blend into tolerance assessment concluded Kenya for that the product is safe humanitarian and substantially assistance equivalent to the non- modified counterparts Approved for human Application to consumption after a import genetically Insect food safety risk 13th W modified maize resistance/ assessment concluded FP mea 540.00MT l into Kenya He September rbicide that the product is safe 2011 for humanitarian tolerance and substantially assistance equivalent to the non- modified counterpart Approved for human Application to consumption after a import genetically Insect food safety risk 13th W modified maize resistance/ assessment concluded FP mea 2,960.00MT l into Kenya He September rbicide that the product is safe 2011 for humanitarian tolerance and substantially assistance equivalent to the non- modified counterpart Approved for human Application to consumption after a import genetically Insect food safety risk 13th W modified maize resistance/ assessment concluded FP mea 250.00MT l into Kenya He September rbicide that the product is safe 2011 for humanitarian tolerance and substantially assistance equivalent to the non- modified counterpart Approved for transit through Kenya after a Application to food safety risk Insect transit genetically 13th assessment concluded WFP modified 1,520.00MT resistance/ September that the product is safe maize/corn mea Herbicide l 2011 for human consumption tolerance through Kenya and substantially equivalent to the non- modified counterpart Applica Approved for transit tion to Insect through Kenya after a transit genetically 13th W resistance/ food safety risk FP modified corn- 480.00MT He September rbicide assessment concluded soya blend through 2011 Ke tolerance that the product is safe nya for human consumption and substantially equivalent to the non- modified counterpart Approved for transit through Kenya after a Application to food safety risk Insect transit genetically 13th assessment concluded WFP modi resistance/ fied 490.00MT that the product is safe maiz He September rbicide e/corn meal 2011 for human consumption tolerance through Kenya and substantially equivalent to the non- modified counterpart Approved for transit through Kenya after a Application to food safety risk Insect transit genetically 13th assessment concluded WFP modi resistance/ fied 990.00MT September that the product is safe maiz Herbicide e/corn meal 2011 for human consumption tolerance through Kenya and substantially equivalent to the non- modified counterpart Approved for transit through Kenya after a Application to food safety risk Insect transit genetically 13th assessment concluded W resistance/ FP modified 680.00MT maiz He September that the product is safe rbicide e/corn meal 2011 for human consumption tolerance through Kenya and substantially equivalent to the non- modified counterpart Approved for transit through Kenya after a Application to food safety risk Insect transit genetically 13th assessment concluded W resistance/ FP modified 530.00MT that the product is safe maiz He September rbicide e/corn meal 2011 for human consumption tolerance through Kenya and substantially equivalent to the non- modified counterpart Application to Approved for transit Insect transit genetically 13th through Kenya after a W resistance/ FP modified 250.00MT food safety risk maiz He September rbicide e/corn meal 2011 assessment concluded tolerance through Kenya that the product is safe for human consumption and substantially equivalent to the non- modified counterpart Approved for transit through Kenya after a Application to food safety risk Insect transit genetically 13th assessment concluded WFP modi resistance/ fied 1,310.00MT September that the product is safe maiz Herbicide e/corn meal 2011 for human consumption tolerance through Kenya and substantially equivalent to the non- modified counterpart Approved for transit through Kenya after a Application to food safety risk Insect transit genetically 13th assessment concluded WFP modified 690.00MT resistance/ September that the product is safe maiz cide e/corn mea Herbil 2011 for human consumption tolerance through Kenya and substantially equivalent to the non- modified counterpart Approved for human Application to consumption after a import genetically Insect food safety risk 17th W modified corn resistance/ assessment concluded FP mea 249.025MT l into Kenya He November rbicide that the product is safe 2011 for humanitarian tolerance and substantially assistance equivalent to the non- modified counterparts Applica Approved for human tion to consumption after a import genetically modi Insect food safety risk fied corn- 17th W resistance/ assessment concluded FP soya blend into 3,140.00MT Ke He November rbicide that the product is safe nya for 2011 tolerance and substantially humanitarian equivalent to the non- assistance modified counterparts Application to Approved for human import genetically Insect consumption after a 17th W modified corn resistance/ food safety risk FP mea 1,300.00MT l into Kenya He November rbicide assessment concluded 2011 for humanitarian tolerance that the product is safe assistance and substantially equivalent to the non- modified counterpart Approved for human Application to consumption after a import genetically Insect food safety risk 17th W modified corn resistance/ assessment concluded FP mea 2,080.00MT l into Kenya He November rbicide that the product is safe 2011 for humanitarian tolerance and substantially assistance equivalent to the non- modified counterpart Approved for human Application to consumption after a import genetically Insect food safety risk 17th W modified corn resistance/ assessment concluded FP mea 180.00MT l into Kenya He November rbicide that the product is safe 2011 for humanitarian tolerance and substantially assistance equivalent to the non- modified counterpart Approved for human Application to consumption after a import genetically Insect food safety risk 17th W modified corn resistance/ assessment concluded FP mea 8,780.00MT l into Kenya He November rbicide that the product is safe 2011 for humanitarian tolerance and substantially assistance equivalent to the non- modified counterpart Approved for human Application to consumption after a import genetically Insect food safety risk 17th W modified corn resistance/ assessment concluded FP mea 390.00MT l into Kenya He November rbicide that the product is safe 2011 for humanitarian tolerance and substantially assistance equivalent to the non- modified counterpart Applica Approved for transit tion to through Kenya after a transit genetically modi Insect food safety risk fied corn- 17th W resistance/ assessment concluded FP soya blend through 1386.125MT Ke He November rbicide that the product is safe nya for 2011 tolerance and substantially humanitarian equivalent to the non- assistance modified counterparts W Application to Insect 10th Approved for human FP 2,440.00MT import genetically resistance/ February consumption after a modified corn Herbicide 2012 food safety risk meal into Kenya tolerance assessment concluded for humanitarian that the product is safe assistance and substantially equivalent to the non- modified counterpart Approved for transit through Kenya after a Application to food safety risk Insect transit genetically 10th assessment concluded WFP modi resistance/ fied corn- 50.00MT He February that the product is safe rbicide soya blend through 2012 for human consumption Ke tolerance nya and substantially equivalent to the non- modified counterparts Approved for transit through Kenya after a Application to food safety risk Insect transit genetically 10th assessment concluded WFP modified maiz resistance/ e 620.00MT February that the product is safe mea Herbicide l through 2012 for human consumption Ke tolerance nya and substantially equivalent to the non- modified counterpart Applica Approved for human tion to consumption after a import genetically modi Insect food safety risk fied corn- W tance/ 11th May assessment concluded FP soya blend into 290.00MT resis Ke Herbicide 2012 that the product is safe nya for tolerance and substantially humanitarian equivalent to the non- assistance modified counterparts Applica Approved for human tion to consumption after a import genetically Insect food safety risk USA modified corn-ID East resistance/ 11th May assessment concluded Af soya blend into 500.00MT rica Ke Herbicide 2012 that the product is safe nya for tolerance and substantially humanitarian equivalent to the non- assistance modified counterparts. Approved Contained Use Research Activities of Genetically Modified Organisms Name of Location/Site App Title of Application De Date sired Trait licant of Facility App Remarks roved Applica Approval was tion to carry given after a out genetic International thorough risk L modification of ivestock Bacterial wilt 11th assessment and R banana for disease ILRI facility- esearch disease March the risk resistance under Nairobi Institute resistance 2011 management laboratory and (ILRI) measures put in greenhouse conditions place were found in Kenya acceptable. Applica Approval was tion to carry given after a out genetic thorough risk transformation of 11th assessment and pigeon pea for insect ILRI facility- Insect ILRI the risk resistance under Na March irobi resistance 2011 management laboratory and measures put in greenhouse condition place were found in Kenya acceptable. Applica Approval was tion to carry given after a out genetic thorough risk transformation of 11th assessment and cassava for stress ILRI facility- Stress ILRI tolerance under Na March the risk irobi tolerance 2011 management laboratory and measures put in greenhouse conditions place were found in Kenya acceptable. Applica Approval was tion to carry given after a out genetic modi thorough risk fication of Yam 11th assessment and (Dioscorea spp) for ILRI facility- Nematode ILRI the risk nematode resistance in Na March irobi resistance 2011 management laboratory and measures put in greenhouse conditions place were found in Kenya acceptable. Application to carry Approval was out genetic given after a modification work of thorough risk 11th cassava for resistance ILRI facility- Virus assessment and ILRI to cassava brown Na August irobi resistance the risk 2011 streak disease under management Laboratory and measures put in greenhouse conditions place were found in Kenya acceptable. Applica Approval was tion for given after a contained use of Knockout Mice of Tr thorough risk ypanosome C 1st assessment and 57BL/6 mouse strain ILRI facility- resistance ILRI December the risk and A/J mouse strain Nairobi model studies 2011 management from Korea,for on mice measures put in laboratory studies of place were found gene function. acceptable. Application for Proof Approval was of Concept: Test of given after a transgene in cattle thorough risk (Bos taurus) under Trypanosome 1st assessment and ILRI containment to s ILRI facility- tudy Na resistance in December the risk irobi basic mechanisms cow 2011 management underlying measures put in trypanosome place were found resistance. acceptable. Application to carry Approval was out genetic given after a modification of Double thorough risk banana for haploidy to assessment and ILRI facility- 11th May ILRI development of Na speed up the the risk irobi 2012 doubled haploid plants breeding management under laboratory and process measures put in greenhouse conditions place were found in Kenya. acceptable. Application for accelerating the developm Approval was ent of given after a improved vaccines thorough risk against livestock assessment and infections caused by ILRI facility- Vaccine 11th May ILRI membe the risk rs of the Nairobi development 2012 M management ycoplasma m measures put in ycoides cluster place were found through the acceptable. application of targeted mutagenesis Section III. Plant Biotechnology Policy: The NBA continues building its human capacity and administrative procedures. The NBA Board of Directors, comprised of representatives on the agencies listed here below, has chosen the NBA’s CEO and Technical and Financial Directors. They, in turn, have hired staff to support their administration. The following regulatory agencies provide Members to the NBA Board of Directors. The Websites indicated for each agency here below take the reader to the respective agency’s agriculture- biotechnology statements. Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Service, Ministry of Agriculture, which oversees the introduction, testing and use of biotechnology plants and seeds; Department of Public Health, Ministry of Public Health which safeguards consumers health through food safety and quality control, surveillance, prevention and control of food borne diseases; Kenya Bureau of Standards, Ministry of Industrialization, which develops food standards, quality assurance, and testing; National Environmental Management Authority, Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources, which oversees environmental questions and conducts environmental impact assessments; Pest Control Products Board which regulates pesticide use; Kenya Wildlife Service, Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources, which handles biodiversity and biotechnology related matters in wildlife and forestry; Kenya Industrial Property Institute, Ministry of Industrialization which handles intellectual property issues; and, Department of Veterinary Services—no known Website available. Section IV. Plant Biotechnology Marketing Issues: Various surveys and/or studies on agricultural biotechnology conducted in Kenya reveal that although many respondents have heard about biotechnology most of them do not have adequate knowledge about the science. The studies referenced here below indicate that most Kenyans wish to learn more about agricultural biotechnology, regardless of the perceived food and environmental safety risks. According to United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID)-funded study entitled ―Agro-Dealers and the Political Economy of Agricultural Biotechnology in Kenya‖ and written by Hannington Odame and Elijah Muange, December 2011, over 60 percent (please see the table here below) of Kenyan farmers and agro-dealers interviewed in a high and a low-rainfall areas of Uasin Gishu and Machakos, respectively, said that they would buy GE seeds but wanted more information. Agriculture Input Dealers Agree Don't Know Interviewed (% of respondents) (% of respondents) Uasin Macha Tot Uasin Macha Tot GE Seeds Gishu kos al Gishu kos al 79. 11. Alleviate food shortage 78 81.5 4 12.2 11.1 8 22. 34. More Nutritious 12.2 38.5 4 34.1 34.6 3 More Yield 63.4 77.8 69. 19.5 18.5 19. 1 1 54. 29. Tolerate drought better 43.9 70.4 4 34.1 22.2 4 50. 28. Resist pest better 42.5 63 7 27.2 29.6 4 30. 39. Resist herbicide better 19.5 48.1 9 39 40.7 7 47. 22. Contaminate local varieties 51.2 42.3 8 17.1 30.8 4 46. 29. Dangerous to human health 50 40.7 3 30 29.6 9 Injurious to non-target 36. organisms 42.5 36 40 40 32 9 61. 18. More expensive 53.7 75 5 17.1 20.8 5 Require more expertise to 61. 17. trade 63.2 58.3 3 21.1 12.5 7 57. 26. Would trade in GM seeds 48.8 75.0 4 26.8 25.0 2 Source: Agro-dealer Survey 2010 Details of the study can be found at: http://www.dfid.gov.uk/r4d/PDF/Outputs/Futureagriculture/FAC_Working_Paper_033.pdf In another study, entitled [Kenyan] Consumers’ Willingness to Pay for Genetically Modified foods in Kenya, conducted by Simon Chege Kimenju( University of Nairobi) and Hugo De Groote (CIMMYT), indicated that about 70 percent of Nairobi consumers would pay the same price for either traditional or GE corn meal. The full report can be found at the following address: http://ageconsearch.umn.edu/bitstream/24504/1/pp05ki01.pdf Section V. Plant Biotechnology Capacity Building and Outreach: The U.S. Government has provided/provides funds to the GOK to further agriculture biotechnology awareness, understanding and appreciation within Kenya. As examples, the U.S. Government has supported the GOK’s National Biotechnology Awareness Strategy (Bio-AWARE-Kenya); agriculture biotechnology regulatory development; the Kenya Agriculture Research Institute’s (KARI) biotechnology program; university outreach and awareness programs; visiting speakers programs; and, individual training through the Borlaug Fellowship Program. Section VI. Animal Biotechnology: The National Biosafety Law 2009 endows the NBA with ―Biosafety‖ regulatory responsibilities. As a result, the NBA regulates animal research and applications that might have ―biosafety‖ concerns in Kenya. The International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) conducts animal research in Kenya and has applied to the NBA as follows: Location ate Title of Application /Site of Desired T Drait F Approved acility Application for contained use of Knockout Mi ILRI Trypanosome 1st ce of C57BL/6 mouse strain and A/J mous facility- resistance model December e strain from Korea,for laboratory Nairobi studies on mice 2011 studies of gene function. Application for Proof of Concept: Test of ILRI transgene in cattle (Bos taurus) under Tr 1st ypanosome facility- December containment to study basic mechanisms Na resistance in cow irobi 2011 underlying trypanosome resistance. Application for accelerating the development of improved vaccines against ILRI Vaccine 11th May livestock infections caused by members of facility- the Mycoplasma mycoides cluster through Na development 2012 irobi the application of targeted mutagenesis Source: NBA
Posted: 22 August 2012

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