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Monday, October 2, 2023

GMOs: Biosafety agency commences analysis of products

Scientists at the GMO (genetically-modified organism) Detection Laboratory of the National Biosafety Management Agency (NBMA) have commenced the analysis of selected products displayed in stores and suspected to contain genetically-modified ingredients.

GM bananas
GM banana. Photo credit: radioaustralia.net.au

According to a statement issued by the NBMA and made available to EnviroNews on Tuesday, March 14 2017, the exercise commenced this week.

The statement disclosed that the analysis followed a three-month GMO survey conducted by the agency which, among other findings, showed the presence of products in stores across the country containing GM ingredients.

Some of the products, the agency adds, have labels showing ingredients contained therein while others do not, “hence the need to carry out an in depth analysis to ascertain the true type of genetic materials and their makeup, and to ensure that it is safe for Nigerians to consume.”

Josephine Amedu, Head of GMO Analysis Laboratory, NBMA, was quoted in the statement as saying: “We do have some foods on our shelves that are said to be GM. Our work here is to ensure that it is actually GM and find out the genetic component that describes the GM material.

“We also have to be sure that the sequence that have been inserted is not one that will be detrimental to the health of Nigerians, which is why we want to be sure that everything that is genetically modified within the borders of Nigeria are safe for public consumption.”

Miss Amedu urged Nigerians to have faith in the ability of scientists working in the NBMA to protect and safeguard their health by being prudent in the discharge of their duties.

The GMO analysis laboratory, described as a state-of-the-art facility, was acquired by the agency in 2016 as part of its resolve to “diligently carryout meticulous and rigorous testing of products for the safety of Nigerians.”

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