La faim justifie-t-elle les moyens

NAIROBI – L’interdiction du Kenya concernant l’importation de cultures d’organismes génétiquement modifiées (OGM) reflète un développement troublant pour un pays normalement considéré comme un innovateur en matière d’agriculture. Cette mesure représente également un recul très important pour un continent qui, la plupart du temps, peine à assurer sa propre sécurité alimentaire. Une démarche rationnelle et scientifique doit prendre le dessus sur les préjudices, les inquiétudes et les hypothèses sans fondement. Le Kenya est en mesure de montrer l’exemple.

Les cultures OGM (également nommées cultures issues du génie génétique ou des biotechnologies) se sont avérées à maintes reprises sécuritaires et sont utilisées avec succès dans le monde entier pour accroître le rendement des activités agraires. Pourtant les décisions bureaucratiques, la propagande et la déformation des faits empêchent des millions de petits producteurs africains, y compris ceux du Kenya, de tirer parti d’une technologie susceptible d’améliorer leurs moyens d’existence et de contribuer à remédier aux pénuries alimentaires.

Plus d’un million de Kenyans doivent actuellement faire appel à l’aide alimentaire à la suite d’une mauvaise récolte de produits céréaliers. Le réseau des systèmes de signalement rapide des risques de famine fait remarquer que les prix du maïs déjà élevés continueront à monter jusqu’à la fin de l’année, exacerbant les pressions sur la sécurité alimentaire et nuisant aux résultats économiques. Puisque le Kenya éprouve déjà des difficultés à nourrir ses habitants et à stabiliser son économie, la technologie des cultures transgéniques devrait être une méthode de choix pour accroître les rendements et les revenus, dont les cultivateurs, les consommateurs et l’environnement auraient bien besoin.

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