ILORIN—The Federal Government has expressed regrets over the death of 5,160 Nigerians yearly from food-borne diseases and urged residents to take food safety serious.
Minister of Health, Professor Isaac Adewole, who stated this at the awareness creation on National Policy of Food Safety and Its Implementation Strategy, said: “The nation has been plagued with preventable food-borne disease outbreaks, such as cholera, typhoid, lassa fever, chemical contamination like lead and mercury as well as mycotoxin poisoning, which is Aflatoxin in nuts, cereals, dried cassava and yam.
“These are responsible for up to 5,160 deaths yearly and have been linked to chronic disease such as systemic failure and cancer. These diseases are generally the consequence of poor food safety culture and poor hygiene.”
Represented by Mrs Anthonia Opara, a director in the ministry, the minister emphasised that food safety, therefore, needed to be given the attention it deserved, saying Nigeria had in the past placed more priority on food security, thus neglecting food safety.