ALL GMO’S AND ITS PRODUCTS MUST UNDERGO RISK ASSESSMENT – NBA

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ALL GMO’S AND ITS PRODUCTS MUST UNDERGO RISK ASSESSMENT – NB

Chilanga … Sunday, June, 06, 2021

THE National Biosafety Authority says conducting risk assessment on products that may contain genetically modified organisms (GMOs) before they are placed on the market is important.

The Authority has also emphasized the need to have all products that may contain GMOs undergo risk assessment before they are imported and released into the environment or placed on the market. Such products could be food, feed and or pharmaceuticals.

Risk assessment helps in identifying, analyzing and evaluating potential risks that may negatively impact humans, animals and the environment.

Speaking ahead of the World Food Safety Day (WFSD), the NBA Chief Executive Officer Mr Lackson Tonga said it is critical that all GMOs and products of GMO are assessed to ascertain their safety before they are imported, released and or placed on the market.

This year’s World Food Safety Day (WFSD) theme, ‘Safe food today for a healthy tomorrow’, stresses that production and consumption of safe food has immediate and long-term benefits for people, the planet and the economy. The World Food Safety Day is celebrated on 7 June every year.

“Safe food is important now and also for the future. That is why risk assessment on food products is inevitable. Risk assessment helps in identifying any harms a product can cause to the health of humans animals or if such a product is detrimental to the environment. As the Authority mandated to handle matters related to GMOs, it is our duty to ensure safety of humans, animals and the environment,” Mr. Tonga said.

“Therefore, it is imperative that researchers, farmers, distributors, suppliers and retailers/traders obtain or seek approvals for GMOs and products that may contain GMOs to ensure safety.”

He said consumers must treat any GMO product or a product which may contain GMOs that has not been authorized by the NBA with suspicion as the Authority has not ascertained the safety of that product.

Mr. Tonga said the Authority will not hesitate to institute penalties on anyone that contravenes the provisions of the Biosafety Act.

The first WFSD was celebrated in 2019. The 2021 theme aims to draw attention and inspire action to help prevent, detect and manage foodborne risks, contributing to food security, human health, economic prosperity, agriculture, market access, tourism and sustainable development.

This is according to statement released to Smart Eagles by NBA communications officer Sandra Lombe.

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