What's New :
GS Mains Classes 2024, Morning Batch Starts: 12th June & Evening Batch Starts: 15th June

First Genetically modified cowpea in Ghana

  • Published
    22nd Jul, 2022


Genetically modified (GM) cowpea has cleared the first of the three regulatory hurdles in the way of commercialisation in Ghana. 

  • If it is commercialised, it will be the first GM crop grown in the country – a major milestone. 

What is Cowpea?

  • Cowpea, a black-eyed pea in some parts of the world – is a major source of protein in Ghana and the rest of the sub-continent.
  • It is a staple and is integral to Ghana’s food security.
  • Ghana is the fifth largest producer of cowpea in Africa.
  • Especially in the northern part of Ghana, where it is second to groundnut in terms of area cultivated.
  • Farmers of the area face many challenges, including an array of pests.
  • The GM cowpea has been genetically engineered to resist the ‘Maruca pod borer’- the major pest in the region.
  • The GM resistance will help decrease the amount of insecticide farmers have been using to control pests and increase yields.
  • Insecticides are known to be deleterious to human health, but their use is on the rise throughout Africa.

About Maruca pod borer

  • Marucavitrata is a pan-tropical insect pest of leguminous crops like pigeon pea, cowpea, mung bean and soybean.
  • Its common names include the maruca pod borer, bean pod borer, soybean pod borer, mung moth, and the legume pod borer.
  • The species was first described by Johan Christian Fabricius in 1787.
  • It can cause losses of 20–80% on the harvests of cowpeas.
  • Its feeding sites on plants are flower buds, flowers and young pods.
You must be logged in to get greater insights.
GS Classes 2024 Optional Foundation Optional Q&A mains test series 2023 mains classes 2023 UPSC Study Material

Verifying, please be patient.

Enquire Now