According to reports, the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has expressed concern over the reluctance of some Nigeria exporters to have their products certified by the agency before exporting same to European countries .
NAFDAC spokesperson, Dr Abubakar Jimoh, voiced out the agency’s concern while speaking with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Monday in Abuja.
NAN reports that NAFDAC recently announced that European Union (EU) had rejected 24 exported food products from Nigeria in 2016, for not meeting standard.
Jimoh explained that the action of exporters had put the country’s image in bad light, and also caused a huge loss to the exporters themselves, with its attendant implication to the economy of the country.
He said that the agency had the capacity to screen and conduct produce tests that would be internationally recognized across the globe, but lamented that exporters chose to bypass NAFDAC and smuggle their products.
According to him, NAFDAC has six functional laboratories that conduct various types of product tests across the country.
The spokesperson said the agency had two functional laboratories in Lagos, one each in Kaduna, Agolo in Anambra, Maiduguri and Port-Hacourt, while another one in Calabar was about to be completed.
He said the agency intended establishing another laboratory in Benue state in the North-Central part of the country.
Jimoh, who is also the NAFDAC Director, Special Duty, noted that the laboratory in Lagos had been accredited internationally and any product that secured approval from such lab would be recognized globally.
He stated that the European Union had certified the laboratory in Lagos and considered it as meeting world standard.
“The EU team that visited our lab in Lagos about a year and half ago, was happy with what it met on ground”
“We have two laboratories in Lagos; the one in Oshodi deals with food products, micro toxic, High Liquid Performance Chromatography and pesticide residue, while the one in Yaba deals mainly with drugs.”
“We have the capacity and as an agency charged with the responsibility of quality control, we are well prepared to ensure that all our exported products get clean bill of health,” he said.
He appealed to Nigerian exporters to ensure that their products got certified by the agency, to avoid international embarrassment.
Jimoh also enjoined Nigerian Customs Service to cooperate with NAFDAC in ensuring that such products were not smuggled out of the country.