The Biosciences for Farming in Africa (B4FA) project, an advocacy organisation on bioscience technology in agriculture, has launched a book on the subject in the country to help share with readers the experiences of bioscience farming on the continent.
The book is titled ‘Insights: The future of Africa... can biosciences contribute?’
It is a collection of essays on people's experiences with bioscience farming and their expert opinions on the subject matter.
The Chairman of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Agriculture, Dr Alhassan Ahmed Yakubu, launched the book in Ghana. According to Dr Bernie Jones, the Director of the B4FA Media Programme, the book was the first of its kind on the continent.
Similar launches would be done in Nigeria, Uganda and Tanzania where the group also operates, Dr Jones said.
Bioscience farming involves the production of genetically modified foods and animals as against natural or organic farming.
Its advocates the argument that bioscience farming is less expensive and challenging, given that it is less dependant on land and natural conditions which, more often, failed farmers.
The B4FA programme has been advocating for its patronage by farmers and agricultural institutions in the country.
Launching the book, Dr Yakubu, who is also the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Member of Parliament for Mion in the Northern Region, said the country needed to put more emphasis on science education, explaining that the little attention given the discipline, especially in schools, was lowering local innovations.
Dr Alhassan, thus, called on students to nurture some interest for science and its related subjects while in school.
The Director of the Biotechnology and Nuclear Agriculture Research Institute (BNARI), Prof. Josephine Nketsia-Tabiri, also called for the establishment of a separate university for agriculture, explaining that its absence in the country was limiting studies and expertise in the sector.
“Most of the students who pass and want to pursue agric in the university end up choosing other courses because there is no such university purposely for the study of agriculture. I think that is not good enough for us," she lamented.
Story by Maxwell Adombila Akalaare