The European Union (EU) has given Nigeria up to June next year to get her acts together and improve the standards of agricultural produce exported overseas. This is sequel to the EU Food Quality Agency’s ban of six food items produced in the country. The ban covers items such as beans, sesame seed, melon seeds, palm oil, bush meat and dried fish.
According to the agency, the rejected beans were found to contain between 0.03mg per kilogramme to 4.6mg/kg of dichlorvos pesticide, when the acceptable maximum residue limit is 0.01 mg per kg.
Chairman Export Group, Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), and CEO of Multimix Academy, Obiora Madu said there is justification for the suspension as safety of food is a basic requirement of food quality.
According to him, food safety implies absence or acceptable and safe levels of contaminants, adulterants, naturally occurring toxins or any hazard that may make food injurious to health on chronic basis.
Madu spoke during a National Agro-Commodity Export stakeholders meeting in Lagos, adding that there is need for a significant level of investment in equipment and education to fill the gap created by the absence of a mature and reasonably well–developed export industry where the supply chain has utilised makeshift or multi-purpose facilities.