KENYA—The Association of Kenya Feed Manufacturers has announced that if the ban on genetically modified (GMO) products is lifted, the cost of livestock feed could be reduced by over 30 percent.

This potential reduction is seen as a significant solution to one of the biggest challenges facing livestock production in the country, the high cost of feed.

The court is set to make a ruling on the GMO ban in October.

Joe Karuri, Association chairman stated that the court’s decision will be crucial in determining thousands of farmers’ future cost of livestock feed.

“Lifting the ban will allow local feed manufacturers to import highly nutritious, quality, and high-yielding GMO products, which will help lower the cost of local feeds by 30 percent,” Karuri said.

He emphasized that this move would enable Kenya to import key ingredients such as soybean meal and yellow maize, both of which are protein-rich and can significantly enhance productivity.

Currently, Kenya imports over 60 percent of the raw materials used in feed manufacturing, which contributes to the high prices.

Karuri pointed out that the country produces 2.5 million tonnes of feed annually, a figure that could increase with a steady supply of necessary raw materials.

He also noted that the prolonged drought two years ago had caused the cost of feed to soar by almost 50 percent for a 70kg bag.

Although the government allowed duty-free importation of GMO-free maize from Ukraine, the ongoing conflict with Russia has hampered this effort.

Roy Mugira, CEO of the National Biosafety Authority, assured that the agency has implemented stringent regulations to ensure the safety of all approved GMO products.

 “We are ready to release disease and weather-tolerant GMO products such as maize, cassava, and potatoes into the market once the court case is resolved,” Mugira said.

The Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock reported that Kenya requires 55 million tonnes of feed annually but currently produces only 40 percent of this demand, leaving a deficit of 33 million tonnes.

The potential lifting of the GMO ban is seen as a vital step towards bridging this gap and supporting the country’s livestock industry.

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