An open letter, from the Alliance for Food Sovereignty in Africa (AFSA), directed at the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation and the University of Iowa, who is conducting human trials on a genetically modified banana, has condemned the human experimentation. The letter has received support from 150 consumer organizations and scientists and can be accessed here http://afsafrica.org/afsa-open-letter-opposing-human-feeding-trials-involving-gm-banana/
The GM banana human trials are funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Iowa State University has been designated as the hot spot for human trials under the direction of Dr. Wendy White. The GM modification consists of adding beta-carotene to the banana to produce additional vitamin A. The purpose is to support the release of GM bananas into Ugandan farms and food system, met with wide scale protest by Ugandan policy advocates.
“Just because the GM banana has been developed in Australia and is being tested in the US, does not make it super! Ugandans know what is super because we have been eating homegrown GM-free bananas for centuries. This GM Banana is an insult to our food, to our culture, to us as a nation, and we strongly condemn it,” said Bridget Mugambe, a Ugandan and AFSA Policy Advocate.
The letter highlights that there is no consensus from the scientific community as to the safety of genetically modified food items.