Experts decry rejection of Nigerian foods in Int’l market
Experts working towards the harmonisation of the Food Safety and Quality Bill (2019) have raised the alarm over the rejection of Nigerian foods in the international market.
They spoke at a workshop organised by the Nigerian Economic Summit Group (NESG) and the Federal Ministry of Health (MoH) to review and harmonise the bill in Abuja.
Permanent Secretary for the ministry, Mr. Mahmuda Mamman, who noted that Nigeria operates a multi-agency food safety regulatory approach, regretted that the system presents significant challenges, including the problem of multi-jurisdiction, resulting in loss of consumer confidence leading to rejection of Nigerian foods in the international market.
Represented by Mr. Taiye Ologun, the permsec reiterated the importance of the bill in ensuring consumer health and improving the acceptability of Nigerian foods in the global market.
He said that food safety stakeholders drafted the bill with the support of the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) to protect the health of consumers and define functions and parts of the federal, state and local councils to ensure that food safety risks are efficiently managed.
Mamman maintained that the Food Safety and Quality Bill (2019) is yet to be harmonised for passage into law, which necessitated the day’s gathering.
Facilitator of the NESG Agriculture and Food Security Policy Commission, Ms Gloria Ekpo, in her goodwill message, said the group supports the protection of the lives and health of Nigerians through the provision of safe foods, which is critical in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), promoting good health and well-being, encouraging consumption and safeguarding public health.