African Centre for Biosafety
The political economy of Africa’s burgeoning chemical fertiliser rush PDF Print option in slimbox / lytebox? (info) E-mail
Monday, 15 September 2014 07:43

Fertilizer-report-20140915The African Centre for Biosafety has today released an in-depth report, The Political Economy of Africa’s burgeoning chemical fertiliser rush, which looks at the role of fertiliser in the Green Revolution push in Africa, some of the key present and future fertiliser trends on the continent and the major players involved in this.

The value of the global fertiliser industry is immense. In 2012 the global sales of NPK fertilisers alone were over US$200 billion, compared to a total global pesticide market of US$75 billion. Though Africa accounts for only around 1.6% of global consumption, discoveries of huge deposits of natural gas around the continent (a key fertiliser ingredient) is expected to result in a flurry of fertiliser plant construction, the costs of which are likely to run in the billions of dollars.

In parallel developments, the promotion of fertiliser use in Africa is a core component of the new Green Revolution push on the continent. This is most clearly articulated by the Abuja Declaration of 2006, which called for average fertiliser use across the continent to increase for 8kg per ha to 50kg per ha by 2015. In the interim, numerous initiatives have place increasing fertiliser use (particularly by small-holder farmers) at the centre of their activities, including the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), Grow Africa and the G8 New Alliance on Food Security and Nutrition. The global fertilise industry, directly through the Norwegian giant Yara, and indirectly through industry bodies such as the International Fertiliser Development Centre, are heavily involved in these processes.

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Africa an El Dorado for South Africa’s Agribusiness Giants PDF Print option in slimbox / lytebox? (info) E-mail
Tuesday, 02 September 2014 09:25

SA-Agribus-coverSouth African agribusinesses are aggressively expanding into Africa in search of profits from a relatively untapped consumer market with rising income levels and to escape the country’s negative economic conditions. This paper traces this expansion and outlines the implications for Africa’s market structure, food security and food sovereignty movements, as well as exploring the potential impact on Africa’s small-scale farmers and producers.

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Industry employing bullying tactics to scupper GM food labelling in South Africa PDF Print option in slimbox / lytebox? (info) E-mail
Friday, 01 August 2014 14:11

GM-Labeling-zebraThe Biotech industry continues to stall the implementation of a GMO labelling regime, claiming that only a "lunatic fringe" or a "European funded lobby" want it, despite government's clear intentions in the Consumer Protection Act to grant the consumer's right to know and to choose. The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has re-opened the public comment period for submissions on the amended GMO labelling regulations until 15 August 2014. Submissions can be made to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 

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Peddling for Profits: Pioneer Hi-Bred's redundant rootworm-resistant GM maize coming soon to South Africa PDF Print option in slimbox / lytebox? (info) E-mail
Wednesday, 23 July 2014 15:42

GM-Rootworm-20140723In this briefing, we show how SA’s biosafety regulatory system favours profits over sound biosafety practise as the regulators have authorised field trials of a GM maize variety to combat a pest, the corn root worm that does not exist in SA at all and will not, for 100 years!!

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ALLIANCE FOR FOOD SOVEREIGNTY IN AFRICA: MEDIA BRIEFING AFSA APPEALS TO ARIPO, AU AND UNECA FOR PROTECTION OF FARMERS’ RIGHTS & RIGHT TO FOOD PDF Print option in slimbox / lytebox? (info) E-mail
Wednesday, 02 July 2014 15:17
Addis Ababa
afsa-logoThe Alliance for Food Sovereignty in Africa (AFSA), a Pan African platform comprising civil society networks and farmer organisations working towards food sovereignty in Africa, has today lodged an urgent appeal to the African Regional Intellectual Property Organisation (ARIPO), African Union and United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) to urgently revise the draft ARIPO Plant Variety Protection Protocol, recognise farmers’ rights and facilitate the right to food. AFSA is requesting that such revision be based on a broader consultation process with farmer organisations and experts from outside of the plant breeders’ rights sector.

African civil society organisations, many of them members of AFSA, made submissions to ARIPO on its draft Plant Variety Protection (PVP) law and policies in November 2012. AFSA has itself submitted comments on ARIPO’s Response to Civil Society: Draft Legal Framework for Plant Variety Protection, March 2014. In both submissions, several serious concerns were raised about the law, which later was titled “the draft ARIPO Plant Variety Protection Protocol”, being based on UPOV 1991 (the International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants), a restrictive and inflexible legal regime focused solely on promoting and protecting the rights of commercial breeders that develop genetically uniform seeds/plant varieties suited to mechanised large-scale mono-cropping agriculture systems. Of particular concern, is that the draft ARIPO PVP Protocol renders the centuries-old African farmers’ practices of freely using, exchanging and selling seeds/propagating material illegal and undermines the right to food.
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