Food Safety: Food scientist alert Nigerians

A food scientist, Mrs Vera Eze, has advised Nigerians to always ensure consumption of safe foods to avoid sicknesses and diseases that could lead to death.

Eze, who is the Chairperson of the Abuja chapter of Nigerian Institute of Food Science and Technology (NIFST), gave the advice while speaking with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Thursday in Abuja.

She observed that some of the foods consumed by Nigerians had the tendency to kill outrightly.

“Most of the foods we consume in Nigeria can kill outrightly, and this is alarming.

“It is the responsibility of food scientists to ensure that the foods we consume are safe.

”We are concerned with how our farmers cultivate their crops, to harvesting methods, to preservation and storage until they are ready for consumption,” Eze said.

She expressed the need for government to create silos and collection centres for farmers for effective regulation and distribution of foods in the country.

Eze advised Nigerians to buy unripe fruits and allow them ripen naturally because most fruits in the markets were ripened with dangerous chemicals.

She advised those who needed to ripen their fruits artificially to use ethylene gas which, she said, was safe for consumption.

“Most of the people who sell fruits these days ripen their fruits with carbide, which is a harmful chemical.

”I advise people to buy unripe fruits which they can ripen by themselves, using safe methods.

“Ethylene gas is one safe material to ripen fruits, it could be more expensive but it is safe,” Eze said.

The food scientist assured that NIFST was committed to ensuring that Nigerians stopped consuming poisonous foods capable of shortening their life spans.

”We intend to periodically bring stakeholders together to discuss challenges of food quality management and proffer solutions.

”It is part of our corporate social responsibility to ensure that all the impediments to safe food in Nigeria are identified and gradually removed.

“Our aim is to ensure that Nigerians no longer die from avoidable poisonous elements in the food they consume,” she said.