Africa > West Africa > Burkina faso > Burkina Faso phasing out GMO cotton, citing poor quality

Burkina Faso: Burkina Faso phasing out GMO cotton, citing poor quality


Farmers in Burkina Faso are phasing out genetically modified cotton citing inferior lint quality of the crop.

The country was seen as an African success story in biotechnology (BT) and a model for other African nations.

Besides denouncing their arrangement with Monsanto, Interprofessional Cotton members are evaluating the all of compensation that they will claim, based on losses related to the cultivation of transgenic cotton since 2008.

They say the BT variety produces shorter, less desirable fibre. The shorter length means poorer quality, which in turn means a lower price in the international market.

Farmers are not affected by the poor lint quality because they sell their cotton at a guaranteed price, set by the government.

However, because cotton manufacturers supply seeds and input to farmers, they can unilaterally phase out BT cotton.

Genetically modified cotton was commercialised in Burkina Faso in 2009. But during the initial years of commercial release, Burkina Faso officials noticed declines in staple lengths and ginning ratios.

Monsanto employees blamed water stress and other weather problems. However, the quality problems persisted and by the 2013/14 season, over two-thirds of the country’s crop was classified as lower-quality medium staple length, with only a third retaining its previous classification as medium to high staple length. The ginning ratio remains well below the 42 % completed by non-GMO cultivators.

Related Articles
  • France's Macron outlines new approach to African policy

    2017/11/29 French President Emmanuel Macron has outlined a new approach to relations with Africa as he begins a regional trip starting with Burkina Faso. He said he was "from a generation that would not tell Africans what to do". He as well said he would declassify secret French files on the former colony's assassinated leader, Thomas Sankara. Mr Macron is on a three-day trip in West Africa, taking in Burkina Faso, a European-African summit in Ivory Coast and Ghana.
  • Namibia Scraps Visas for Africans

    2017/11/01 Namibia has gotten the ball rolling on plans to scrap visa requirements for African passport holders next Cabinet authorised the implementation of this process - to be carried out in line with diplomatic procedures. Namibia will any minute at this time start issuing African passport holders with visas on arrival at ports of entry as a initial step towards the eventual abolition of all visa requirements for all Africans.
  • Africa: Experts Explore Infrastructure and Cooperation to Improve Lives

    2017/11/01 Addis Ababa — African economies require structural transformation to attain sustained increase that trickles down to all its peoples, an official from the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) told experts gathered at the organization’s Ethiopian headquarters. Soteri Gatera, who heads the ECA’s Industrialization and Infrastructure Section, says only such “inclusive” economic increase will help resolve the “persistent social economic problems” Africa faces.
  • Africa's last international banks make their stand

    2017/10/31 On June 1, 2017, Barclays sold a 33.7% stake in its African business, Barclays Africa Group Limited (BAGL). The transaction reduced the UK lender’s stake in its African offshoot to 14.9% and permitted, in accounting terms, the deconsolidation of BAGL from its parent. Additional symbolically, it brought to an end Barclays’ operations on the continent next additional than 100 years. The rise of Africa’s home-grown financial players has led most international lenders to withdraw from the continent. However, Société Générale and Standard Chartered are not only staying put but marking territory for digital expansion. James King reports.
  • Nobel Laureate Joseph Stiglitz Calls For New Strategy

    2017/10/19 Joseph Stiglitz has advised African nations to adopt coordinated strategy encompassing agriculture, manufacturing, mining, and service sectors to attain same success delivered by the old manufacturing export-led strategy. Prof. Stiglitz, an economist and professor at Columbia University, New York, gave the advice at the Babacar Ndiaye lecture series introduced by African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) which debuted in Washington D.C.