Monday, February 5, 2018

Namibia Opened Biotech-Lab

Namibia has opened a laboratory for testing food for genetically modified organisms, the first in the Southern African country. Higher education minister Itah Kandjii-Murangi opened the laboratory, designed by the National Commission on Research, Science and Technology in Windhoek, Monday. Kandjii-Murangi said the laboratory would play a crucial role in testing genetically modified products.
Genetically Modified Organisms or GMOs are engineered products that have been a hot topic in recent history from an ethical and political standpoint.
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"GMO testing is crucial to ensure that only GMOs and GMO products that are approved for use in Namibia are on the market," the minister said. According to Landjii-Murangi, the laboratory will also play a role in building local capacity through research, producing professors and researchers in the field of biotechnology. By building local food safety assessment capacity, Kandjii-Murangi said, Namibia will be in a better position to make informed decisions on the standard of food produced or imported through an evidence-based approach.
She further said Namibia suffered misinformation on genetically modified organism because of lack of detection capacity and training in biotechnology. In her concluding remarks, Kandjii-Murangi urged universities, the food industry and pharmacies to utilize the laboratory.

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