It’s all fun and games till someone messes with the egusi!
According to news coming out of the Mother Ship, Nigeria faces loss of revenue running into billions of naira from now till 2016 as a result of the European Union’s ban on the country’s food exports including beans, sesame seeds, melon seeds, dried fish and meat, peanut chips and palm oil.
I don’t even know what peanut chips are, and I don’t particularly send beans, but melon seeds and palm oyeh are #bae, and I am not smiling at all.
Apparently, according to the European Food Safety Authority, the rejected beans was found to contain between 0.03mg per kilogramme to 4.6mg/kg of dichlorvos pesticide, more than the acceptable maximum residue limit of 0.01mg/kg.
The president of the Federation of Agricultural Commodity Associations, Dr. Victor Iyama, has said the body is looking into the banned items to find out the cause and see how the ban can be reversed.
I was cheering him on too – this will be a huge loss of revenue for Nigeria and a mandatory diet for me – until he tried to explain that the excess in residue limit of insecticide in the food exports was from poor storage of pesticide, maintaining that farmers should not be held liable in these cases.
He said, “When one is fumigating produce for shipping, one is not supposed to leave the preservatives inside the containers because some bags of produce may come in contact with them. But some people must have left the preservatives inside the containers after fumigation.”
We’re too anyhow to be honest with you. Even if this be the case, for the head of the organisation dealing with food exports to admit that pesticides are stored too closely to FOOD, is a laughable excuse. Surely ‘Do Not Store Food and Poison Together’ has to be in the first chapter of Food Storage 101?
Here’s hoping they sort it out to meet EU-regulated standards. In the meantime, I’m coming first; lemme go and plant some palm trees and melon seeds in my back garden in “sunny” Kent.
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