18 July 2018

Nigeria: 'High Residue of Adulterated Pesticides On Produce Affecting Market Access'

The Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) has stated that while high level of residue on farm products make them unsafe for consumption, it was also a part of many reasons why exported produce originating from Nigeria were being rejected.

According to the Standards body, using quality pesticides while also adhering to global best practices remain important in enhancing the acceptability of Nigerian products abroad.

The Director General, Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON), Osita Aboloma, during a one-day sensitisation workshop organised for farmers and agro-chemical dealers in Kano, said the reason why most farm produce are rejected at the global market is due to the high level of residue on farm products making them unsafe for consumption.

Speaking on the "Dangers of using sub-standard, adulterated pesticides", Aboloma noted that the move by SON was to help eradicate the level of neglect of Nigeria's farm produce at the international market.

"This is why we are sensitising our farmers on the need to always produce to meet global best practices while also driving the non-oil export sector," he said.

He explained that the Federal Government has directed SON, other regulatory agencies and Department of Agriculture in the country to strengthen the regulatory approach on the manufacture, sales and distribution of unwholesome pesticides in the market.

He stated that the directive was also to get rid of the criminal network involved in the trade malpractice of adulterated pesticides and other related products.

The DG who was represented by the Director of Operations in the agency, Felix Nyado, added that SON would continue to monitor the performance and sale of the products in the markets to guarantee the safety of farmers using them, consumers of the farm produce as well as to protect the environment.

He pointed out that producing more food from the increasingly depleted soil was a major concern, not only to farmers but also to large food production companies and governments in the country.

According to him, the workshop was aimed at sensitising farmers and agro-chemical dealers across the country on the need to boost agriculture.

"Current worldwide trend shows an increase in the sale of pesticide products that are sub-standard contain contaminated contents or do not contain active ingredients).

"Therefore, investigation by the SON on the agro-chemical product markets, confirmed Nigeria is not immune from the above global trend," he said.

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