Vol. 4, No. 8, p. 233-246 - Dec. 31, 2017
Bioprocess engineering and genetically modified foods: tackling food insecurity in Africa
Oluwadamilola Matthew Makinde , Osebhahiemen Odion Ikhimiukor and Stephen Fapohunda
Bioprocess engineering today has made tremendous discoveries principally aimed at improving the overall quality of living of any society. Significant of these discoveries is the cultivation of genetically modified foods (GM foods). This paper discusses the problem of food security in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) and the practicability of GM foods in ameliorating this problem. In SSA, food security is currently being threatened by several factors ranging from natural systems that cause environmental deterioration such as floods and droughts to anthropogenic exacerbations ranging from poor land and agricultural management policies; increase in social and economic inequality; terrorism, civic unrest, strife and wars and rapid population growth and demographic changes, amongst others. Drawbacks to the poor food security in SSA is majorly associated with malnutrition and corresponding loss in human capita productivity in the region. Statistics currently portray that one in four persons in Africa is undernourished. Hence, the timely need for disruption in current trends is imperative. The growth of GM foods has seen an exponential increase worldwide, with over 179.7 million hectares being planted, this trend is however very poor in SSA. The pros, cons and hindrances influencing the use of GM foods in SSA have been discussed. It is the opinion of the authors that the use of Biotech improved foods in curbing the food crisis in SSA should be explored and committed to by the African Union, alongside amendment of policies that promulgate weaknesses of agricultural institutional in African Nations.
Bioprocess engineering; Genetically modified foods; Food security; Sub-Saharan Africa; Malnutrition.
ACB - African Centre for Biosafety. The revised African model laws on biosafety and the African biosafety strategy. Arusha, Tanzania: ACB, 2009. (Briefing paper, 9). Available from: <http://acbio.org.za/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/AU_Biosafety-brief.pdf>. Accessed on: May 23, 2017.
Adegbola, J. A.; Bamishaiye E. I.; Daura, A. M. Food security in Nigeria: government's intervention and the place of effective storage. Asian Journal of Agriculture and Rural Development, v. 1, no. 2, p. 56-63, 2011.
Agyare-Kwabi, P. Women and Food Security in West Africa. Proceed of the Seminar on Women, Integrated Farming Systems and Food Security in West Africa, Accra, 2003.
Altieri, M.; Rosset, P. Ten reasons why biotechnology will not ensure food security, protect the environment and reduce poverty in the developing world. AgBioForum, v. 2, no. 3/4, p. 155-162, 1999. Available from: <http://www.agbioforum.org/v2n34/v2n34a03-altieri.pdf>. Accessed on: May 23, 2017.
Amin, L.; Hamdan, F.; Hashim, R.; Samani, M. C.; Anuar, N.; Zainol, Z. A.; Jusoff, K. Risks and benefits of genetically modified foods. African Journal of Biotechnology, v. 10, no. 58, p. 12481-12485, 2011.
Barrows, G.; Steven, S.; David, Z. Agricultural biotechnology: the promise and prospects of genetically modified crops. The Journal of Economic Perspectives, v. 28, no. 1, p. 99-120, 2014. Available from: <http://pubs.aeaweb.org/doi/pdfplus/10.1257/jep.28.1.99>. Accessed on: May 23, 2017.
Batista, R.; Oliveira, M. M. Facts and fiction of genetically engineered food. Trends in Biotechnology, v. 27, no. 5, p. 277-286, 2009. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tibtech.2009.01.005
Beardmore, J. A.; Porter, J. S. Genetically modified organisms and aquaculture. Rome: FAO, 2003. (FAO Fisheries Circular, 989). Available from: <http://www.fao.org/docrep/006/Y4955E/Y4955E00.HTM. Accessed on: May 23, 2017.
Bernstein, J. A.; Bernstein, L. I.; Bucchini, L.; Goldman, L. R.; Hamilton, R. G.; Lehrer, S. Clinical and laboratory investigation of allergy to genetically modified foods. Environmental Health Perspectives, v. 111, no 8, p. 1114-1121, 2003. Available from: <https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1241560/pdf/ehp0111-001114.pdf>. Accessed on: May 23, 2017.
Boon, E. K. Food security in Africa: challenges and prospects. In: Boon, E. K. (Ed.). Regional sustainability review: Africa. Abu Dhabi: Unesco/EOLSS, 2009. p. 23-53. v. 1.
Chambers, J. A.; Zambrano, P.; Falck-Zepeda, J.; Gručre, G.; Sengupta, D.; Hokanson, K. GM agricultural technologies for Africa: a state of affairs. Washington: International Food Policy Research Institute, African Development Bank, 2014.
Craig, W.; Tepfer, M.; Degrassi, G.; Ripandelli, D. An overview of general features of risk assessment of genetically modified crops. Euphytica, v. 164, no. 3, p. 853-880, 2008. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10681-007-9643-8
D'Agnolo, G. GMO: Human health risk assessment. Veterinary Research Communications, v. 29, suppl. 2, p. 7-11, 2005. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11259-005-0003-7
Davies, R.; Ollier, S. Allergy: the facts. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2001.
Domingo, J. L. Toxicity studies of genetically modified plants: a review of the published literature. Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition, v. 47, p. 721-733, 2007. https://doi.org/10.1080/10408390601177670
Dona, A.; Arvanitoyannis, I. S. Health risk of genetically modified foods. Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition, v. 49, p. 164-175, 2009. https://doi.org/10.1080/10408390701855993
Ekici, K.; Can, S. Y. A. Perspective on genetically modified food crops. African Journal of Agricultural Research, v. 6, no. 7, p. 1639-1642, 2012. https://doi.org/10.5897/AJAR10.284
Elliott, K.; Madan, J. Can GMOs deliver for Africa? Washington, DC: Center for Global Development, 2016. (CGD Policy Paper 080). Available from: <https://www.cgdev.org/sites/default/files/CGD-Policy-Paper-80-Elliott-Madan-GMOs-for-Africa.pdf>. Accessed on: Aug. 25, 2017.
FAO. Food production: the critical role of water, in world food summit. Rome: FAO, 1996. (Technical background documents 6-11, v. 1).
FAO. Food security and agricultural development in Sub-Saharan Africa. Rome: FAO, 2006. (Policy Brief, No. 1).
FAO. Regional overview of food insecurity: African food security prospects brighter than ever. Accra: FAO, 2015.
Giddings, L. V.; Atkinson, R. D.; Wu, J. U. Suppressing growth: how GMO opposition hurts developing nations. Washington: Information Technology and Innovation Foundation, 2016. Available from: <http://www2.itif.org/2016-suppressing-innovation-gmo.pdf. Accessed on: Aug. 25, 2017.
Gilbert, N. Case studies: a hard look at GM crops. Nature, v. 497, p. 24-26, 2013. https://doi.org/10.1038/497024a
Hagen, P. E.; Weiner, J. B. The Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety: new rules for international trade in living modified organisms. The Georgetown International Law Review, v. 12, no. 697, p. 1-21, 2000.
Hammer, M. Writing nature: discourses of ecology. The economics of genetically modified foods. Stanford, UK: University of Standford, 2003. Available from: <https://web.stanford.edu/~cbross/Markrp.html. Accessed on: Aug. 25, 2017.
Han, L. Genetically modified microorganisms: development and applications. In: Parekh, S. R. (Ed.). The GMO handbook: genetically modified animals, microbes, and plants in biotechnology. New York: Springer, 2004. p. 29-51. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-59259-801-4_4
Hilderink, H.; Brons, J.; Ordoñez, J.; Akinyoade, A.; Leliveld, A.; Lucas, P.; Kok, M. Food security in sub-Saharan Africa: an explorative study. The Hage: PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency, 2012. Available from: <http://www.pbl.nl/sites/default/files/cms/publicaties/PBL_2012_Exploring food security_555075001_0.pdf>. Accessed on: Aug. 25, 2017.
Hug, K. Genetically modified organisms: do the benefits outweigh the risks? Medicina (Kaunas), v. 44, no. 2, p. 87-99, 2008. Available from: <http://medicina.lsmuni.lt/med/0802/0802-01e.pdf>. Accessed on: Aug. 25, 2017.
Ibiam, O. F. A.; Okoi, I. A. Genetically modified food: health benefits and risks. International Journal of Agricultural Science Research, v. 1, no. 2, p. 24-33, 2012.
Idris, N. M.; Majid, M. R.; Choji, I. D. A comprehensive approach to drought and desertification in Nigeria. Management of Environmental Quality: An International Journal, v. 19, no. 6, p. 690-704, 2008. https://doi.org/10.1108/14777830810904911
ISAAA - International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-Biotech Applications Annual report Executive Summary, 2012.
ISAAA - International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-Biotech Applications. Executive Summary - Global Status of Commercialized Biotech/GM Crops: 2015. 2015.
James, C. Global Status of Commercialized Biotech/GM Crops: 2014. Ithaca, NY: International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-Biotech Applications, 2014. (ISAAA Brief, 49).
Key, S.; Julian K.-C. M.; Pascal, M. W. D. Genetically modified plants and human health. Journal of Royal Society of Medicine, v. 101, p. 290-298, 2008. https://doi.org/10.1258/jrsm.2008.070372
Klümper, W.; Qaim, M. A meta-analysis of the impacts of genetically modified crops. PLoS ONE, v. 9, no. 11, 2014. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0111629
Kramkowska, M.; Grzelak, T.; Czyżewska, K. Benefits and risks associated with genetically modified food products. Annals of Agricultural and Environmental Medicine, v 20, no. 3, p. 413-419, 2013. Available from: <http://www.aaem.pl/pdf-71952-9179?filename=Benefits and risks.pdf>. Accessed on: Aug. 25, 2017.
Ladisch, M. R. Bioprocess Engineering (Biotechnology). New York: John Wiley and Sons, 2005. (Van Nostrand's Scientific Encyclopedia).
Ladisch, M. R.; Kohlmann, K. L. Recombinant human insulin. Biotechnology Progress, v. 8, no. 6, p. 469-478, 1992. https://doi.org/10.1021/bp00018a001
Maharjan, K. L.; Chhetri, A. K. Household food security in rural areas of Nepal: relationship between socio-economic characteristics and food security status. Proceed of the International Association of Agricultural Economist Conference, Gold Coast Australia, 2006.
Markov, S. A. Bioprocess Engineering. In: Franceschetti, D. R (Ed.). Applied science. Amenia, NY, Salem Press, 2012. v. 1. p. 240-245.
NAS - National Academy of Sciences. Putting biotechnology to work: bioprocess engineering. Washington, DC: National Academy of Sciences, 1992.
Nathaneal, J. It's practically impossible to define 'GMOs'. 2015. Available from: <http://grist.org/food/mind-bomb-its-practically-impossible-to-define-gmos/. Accessed on: Mar. 26, 2017.
Ojo, E. O.; Adebayo, P. F. Food security in Nigeria: an overview. European Journal of Sustainable Development, v. 1, no. 2, p. 199-222, 2012. Available from: <https://ecsdev.org/ojs/index.php/ejsd/article/view/24/18>. Accessed on: Mar. 24, 2017.
Olaniyan, S A.; Bakare, A. A.; Olajumoke A. M. Genetically modified Foods in Nigeria: a long-lasting solution to hunger. Estudos de Biologia, v. 29, no. 67, p. 191-202, 2007. Available from: <https://periodicos.pucpr.br/index.php/estudosdebiologia/article/viewFile/22768/21874>. Accessed on: Mar. 26, 2017.
Otaha, I. J. Food insecurity in Nigeria: way Forward. African Research Review, v. 7, no. 4, p. 26-35, 2013. http://dx.doi.org/10.4314/afrrev.v7i4.2
Owino, O. Scientists torn over Kenya's recent GM food ban. Nature, 2012. https://doi.org/10.1038/nature.2012.11929
Paini, D. R.; Sheppard, A. W.; Cook, D. C.; De Barro, P. J.; Worner, S. P.; Thomas, M. B. Global threat to agriculture from invasive species. PNAS, v. 113, no. 27, p. 7575-7579, 2016. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1602205113
Paoletti, C.; Flamm, E.; Yan, W.; Meek, S.; Renckens, S.; Fellous, M. GMO risk assessment around the world: some examples. Trends in Food Science & Technology, v. 19, p. S70-S78, 2008. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tifs.2008.07.007
Parisi, C.; Tillie, P.; Rodríguez-Cerezo, E. The global pipeline of GM crops out to 2020. Nature Biotechnology, v. 23, no. 1, p. 31-36, 2016. https://doi.org/10.1038/nbt.3449
Pimentel, D.; Zuniga, R.; Morrison, D. Update on the environmental and economic costs associated with alien-invasive species in the United States. Ecological Economics, v. 52, no. 3, p. 273-288, 2005. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ecolecon.2004.10.002
Qaim, M. Benefits of genetically modified crops for the poor: household income, nutrition, and health. New Biotechnology, v. 27, no. 5, p. 552-557, 2010. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.nbt.2010.07.009
Ronald, P. Plant genetics, sustainable agriculture and global food security. Genetics, v. 188, no. 1, p. 11-20, 2011. https://doi.org/10.1534/genetics.111.128553
Ronald, P. The truth about GMOs. Boston Review, 2013. Available from: <http://bostonreview.net/forum/pamela-ronald-gmo-food>. Accessed on: Jul. 03, 2017.
Sheetal, A. L. Genetically modified foods-solution for food security. International Journal of Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, v. 5, no. 1, p. 43-48, 2014. https://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0064879
Taire, M. Nigeria: GM foods, keeping the peace in Liberia. 2003. Available from: <http://allafrica.com/stories/200308150295.html>. Acce ssed on: Aug. 24, 2017.
Thompson, J. A. How genetic engineering can help small farmers in developing countries. Current History, v. 114, no. 775, p. 305-310, 2015.
Traavik, T.; Nielsen, K.; Quist, D. Genetic engineering of living cells and organisms. In: Traavik, T.; Ching, L. L. Biosafety first: holistic approaches to risk and uncertainty in genetic engineering and genetically modified organisms. Penang, Malaysia: Third World Network and GenØk, 2009. Available from: <http://genok.no/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/Chapter-4.pdf>. Accessed on: Aug. 24, 2017.
Ubalua, A. Transgenic plants: successes and controversies. Biotechnology and Molecular Biology Reviews, v. 4, no. 6, p. 118-127, 2009. Available from: <http://www.academicjournals.org/article/article1380104928_Ubalua.pdf>. Accessed on: Aug. 24, 2017.
UNEP. Africa environment outlook: past, present and future perspectives. Nairobi: UNEP, 2002.
UNICEF. 400,000 children in north-east Nigeria at risk of severe acute malnutrition. Available from: <https://www.unicef.org/nutrition/nigeria_94178.html>. Accessed on: Jul. 03, 2017.
Vahyala, A. T.; Minnessi, G. K.; Kabiru, U. The effects of Boko Haram insurgency on food security status of some selected local government areas in Adamawa State, Nigeria. Sky Journal of Food Science, v. 5, no. 3, p. 12 18, 2016. Available from: <https://doi.org/10.2174/1876396001104010003
Wedding, K.; Tuttle, J. N. Pathway to productivity: the role of GMOs for food security in Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda. New York: CSIS - Centre for Strategic and International Studies, 2013. Available from: <https://csis-prod.s3.amazonaws.com/s3fs-public/legacy_files/files/publication/131010_Wedding_PathwaysToProductivity_Web.pdf>. Accessed on: May 23, 2017.
WHO - World Health Organization. Food genetically modified. Available from: <http://www.who.int/topics/food_genetically_modified/en/>. Accessed on: Jul. 13, 2017.
World Bank. Africa's future and the World Bank's support to it. Washington D.C: World Bank, 2011.
Yonekura, K.; Saito, K. Review: genetically modified plants for the promotion of human health. Biotechnology Letters, v. 28, no. 24, p. 1983-1991, 2006. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10529-006-9194-4