What follows is an official statement released by Food Sovereignty Ghana on Monday, May 19, 2014, in response to the Plant Breeders Bill.
The debate on the Plant Breeders Bill (PBB) and Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) in Ghana and across the globe is of concern to food security, socio-economic, cultural and human dignity. This is most important to small holder farmers due to implications for agriculture which still forms the backbone of the economy.
Having provided the platform for small holder farmers in the northern Ghana courtesy the Peasant Farmers Association of Ghana, Action Aid Ghana and the Centre for Indigenous Knowledge and Organizational Development to understand both the negative and positive effects of the above topic have agreed on the following
The PBB in its current state undermines and threatens the inherent right of indigenous peoples and farmers to access to, own, save and share their traditional germplasm and biodiversity, which is necessary for their survival. Therefore privatization of seed and biodiversity through any intellectual property rights (IPR) regime, favors large-scale plant breeders, while violating the basic right to seed of indigenous communities and small holder farmers, who depend on seed as a resource for survival.
The passage of the PBB in its current form, which is at the consideration stage, would allow multinational seed and chemical companies to take over the country’s seed market from Ghanaian seed producers and indigenous farmers.