NAFDAC To Nigerians: Stop Refrigerating Cooked Food For More Than Three Days


    The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has urged Nigerians to refrain from storing cooked food in the refrigerator for more than three days.

    According to the agency, cooked food stored in the refrigerator for days is susceptible to contamination by disease-causing pathogens, key agents of foodborne diseases that can lead to death.

    Food safety incidents are situations where there is a potential or confirmed health risk associated with food consumption. A food incident can happen, for example, due to accidents, inadequate controls, food fraud, or natural events.

    NAFDAC Director General Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye tasked all stakeholders in the food supply chain to take deliberate actions to institute a food safety culture in their operations to mitigate the food hazards and risks that could compromise food safety.

    The DG spoke at the 2024 World Food Safety Day with the theme: ‘Food Safety: Prepare for the unexpected,’ where she emphasised that food safety is a collective responsibility, and the need for everyone, from producers to consumers, to play their part to ensure that the food we eat is safe.

    According to the DG in a statement by the agency’s Resident Media Consultant, Sayo Akintola on Tuesday, the World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that globally, one in 10 people fall ill, and 420,000 die each year due to consuming contaminated food.

    This results in the loss of 33 million healthy life years, with children under five and other vulnerable groups in poorer regions being disproportionately affected.

    In developing countries, about $110 billion is lost every year on medical expenses due to unsafe food.

    Adeyeye, who noted that food safety is not only important for public health but a sine qua non for economic development and food security, emphasised that everybody has a role to play from the farm to the table to ensure that the food we consume is safe and will not cause damage to our health.

    She added that for World Food Safety Day 2024, WHO and Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) are asking all stakeholders along the food supply chain if they are prepared to address unexpected threats to food safety in an increasingly interconnected and interlinked global food supply.

    According to her, while being ready to manage food safety incidents requires dedicated efforts from policymakers, food safety authorities, farmers, and food business operators, consumers can also play a very active role.

    She, however, restated that the Federal Ministry of Health and Social Welfare has developed programmes for the elimination, eradication, prevention, and control of diseases, which include the National Integrated Guidelines for Foodborne Disease Surveillance and Response, useful for preparedness and rapid response to emerging and re-emerging foodborne diseases.

    She challenged all the stakeholders, from regulatory officers, experts, producers, processors, distributors, retailers, restaurant outlets, and consumers, to consider if they are indeed prepared for the unexpected.

    “Let us all stay true to the statements ‘food safety is everyone’s business and food safety is a shared responsibility’ as we celebrate this year’s World Food Safety Day.

    “Working together, we will continue to strengthen our food safety system, ensuring its resilience, robustness, and preparedness for the unexpected,” she added.


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