NAFDAC To Phase Out Products That Fail Micronutrient Fortification Test | Independent Newspapers Limited
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NAFDAC To Phase Out Products That Fail Micronutrient Fortification Test

Posted: May 17, 2015 at 7:45 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

By Tor Vande-Acka  –  Makurdi 


The National Agency for Food, Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has attributed the rising number of deaths of young mothers during childbirth and poor learning ability of children to deficiencies in micronutrients. It has therefore vowed to take off the shelf products that do not have sufficient micronutrients by shutting down factories that fail the edible food producers micronutrient fortification compliance test.

It described as alarming the high number of deaths recorded among Nigerian children between ages 0 – 5 years as a result of high level of micronutrient deficiency, adding that one in every four children under age 5 in Nigeria suffers from Vitamin “A” deficiency.

The Agency noted that in carrying out the exercise it would be able to check the rising number of deaths of young mothers during childbirth due to anaemia and the poor learning ability of  children which were as a result of micronutrient deficiencies.

Benue State Coordinator, NAFDAC, Anikoh Ibrahim, made this known in Makurdi over the weekend when he led officials of the agency to markets in the state, on a random testing of products for micronutrient fortification compliance.

The Agency carried out the test on sugar, flour, salt and vegetable oil among others products in some selected markets in Makurdi, the state capital; an exercise which is expected to be extended to other LGAs of the state.

He stressed, “I must therefore hasten to say that in the event of non-compliance to mandatory food fortification by manufacturers of vegetable oil, wheat/maize flour and sugar, necessary sanctions will be applied which includes immediate closure of the concerned factories.”

Ibrahim lamented that the agency embarked on the exercise “because it has discovered that one in every four children under the age of five in Nigeria suffers from Vitamin A deficiency while about 31% of mothers in Nigeria are iodine deficient” due to deficiency in micronutrients.

According to him; “This is the more reason why it is the right of every Nigerian to consume fortified foods to guard against diseases and untimely deaths; hence it is important that consumers begin to demand for fortified staples.”

He stressed that the Agency has set out punitive measures among them the payment of administrative fines, withdrawal of products from markets and destruction of same by the agency for non-compliance.

Ibrahim who explained that most of the products subjected to the test met the minimum fortification standards, adding that manufacturers of products that failed the test would be notified before they were sanctioned.