Agricultural Biotechnology, Developing Countries and the Hunger Problematic: The Promise-Practice Gap and the Need for Sustainable Indigenization

By Samuel Abaidoo.

Published by The Technology Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

This presentation addresses the gap between the promise and the practice of the agricultural biotechnology revolution. The promise of this new transition in agriculture involving genetic modification (GM) of agricultural products is manifested in its representation as an important remedy for the problem of global hunger or food insecurity, especially in the developing world. The evidence from a decade of R&D work and commercial cultivation of GM crops, however, shows a significant gap between promise and practice. The articulated promise, used in part to legitimate this significant shift in how humans acquire food, has resulted in significant increases in adoption and diffusion of agricultural biotechnology. This has occurred over same decade that has seen the worsening of food insecurity. The disconnection between promise and practice, it is argued, is a reflection of the structural contexts within and under which the biotechnological transformation of agriculture is occurring. It is also a reflection of the structural conditions of the mostly food insecure countries of the developing world, which do not converge with the current drivers of the biotechnology transition in agriculture.
To address the promise-practice gap this presentation argues for indigenization of agricultural biotechnology in perennially food insecure communities in ways that are sustainable.

Keywords: Agricultural Biotechnology, Hunger Problematic, Food Insecurity, Indigenization

The International Journal of Technology, Knowledge and Society, Volume 4, Issue 5, pp.39-50. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 623.150KB).

Dr. Samuel Abaidoo

Associate Professor of Sociology and Department Chair, Department of Sociology and Criminal Justice, Kennesaw State University, Kennesaw, Georgia, USA

I obtained by undergraduate education from the University of Cape Coast, Ghana. I had my graduate education at University of Saskatchewan, Canada. I received a junior scholar award from the government of Canada part of which was tenured at the University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada. My teaching and research interest are environmental sociology and technology and society.

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