Kenya: Cabinet approves commercial farming of BT cotton


Kenya’s Cabinet on Thursday approved the commercial farming of BT cotton hybrids following the successful completion of field trials that were conducted over a period of five years.

The commercial farming of BT cotton is set to ensure farmers earn more from the crop through increased production.

It will also boost the manufacturing pillar of the Big 4 Agenda where Kenya seeks to establish itself as a regional leader in textile and apparel production.

The performance trial was done after an environmental release approval by the National Bio-safety Authority (NBA) in 2016, based on Environmental Impact Assessment clearance certificate and licence for open field trials issued in 2018.

The progress is a major breakthrough for Kenya, which lags behind other African countries in deployment of BT technology despite enormous knowledge in plant breeding for insect-resistance cotton and many crops including maize.

BT technology has been used to mitigate effects of pests and diseases, drought stress and other challenges facing farmers globally with broader advantage of reduced production costs, improved crop quality and environmental protection from use of excessive pesticides through chemical sprays.


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