Scientific Research and Essays

  • Abbreviation: Sci. Res. Essays
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1992-2248
  • DOI: 10.5897/SRE
  • Start Year: 2006
  • Published Articles: 2752

Full Length Research Paper

Stakeholders’ perceptions and application of biotechnology in agricultural industries in Swaziland

Dlamini, Abednego M1*, Dube, Musa A1 and Nkambule, Noah2
  1University of Swaziland, Faculty of Agriculture, Private Bag Luyengo, Luyengo Swaziland. 2Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives, P.O. Box 162 Mbabane, Swaziland.
Email: [email protected]

  •  Accepted: 29 September 2008
  •  Published: 31 October 2008

Abstract

 

Agriculture, forestry, and manufacturing contribute about 47.6% of Swaziland gross domestic product (GDP). A descriptive type of research was used to investigate the application of biotechnology in the agricultural based industries in Swaziland. Stakeholders were invited to a workshop where the participatory approach for data collection was used. Data were also collected by means of field visits and interviews. Data were analyzed using Micro Soft Excel statistical package. The findings showed that about 12% of the agricultural industries were not involved in biotechnology. Over 60% of the stakeholders responded that they were users of biotechnology materials and over 30% were involved in the production of biotechnology materials. Perceptions of respondents towards acceptance of modern biotechnology products have shown that respondents strongly agreed, mean = 6.0, with the statement ‘drought tolerant maize should be grown in the country’. The major problems that should be addressed by modern biotechnology were development of vaccines (95%) and development of drought tolerant crops (80%). Results showed that modern biotechnology had a minor role in maize field pest control (20%) and in herbicide tolerance (15%).  Biotechnology research is imperative for food security in Swaziland and this could be regulated by establishing a sound biosafety framework. 

 

Key words: Agricultural industries, biotechnology, Swaziland, transgenic products.