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NAFDAC warns against use of snipers to preserve foodstuffs

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The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has again warned the public against the use of Sniper and other brands of ‘’Dichlorvos’’ (DDVP) in the preservation of foodstuffs, saying it has health implications that could result in death.

The director-general of NAFDAC, Mojisola Adeyeye, reiterated the dangers in the misuse and misapplication of Snipers and other brands of Dichlorvos by the general public, especially grain merchants, beans aggregators and dried fish sellers.

According to the DG, the misuse of the dangerous agrochemicals in the preservation of foodstuffs is replete with health implications with symptoms such as weakness, headache, tightness in chest, blurred vision, salivation, sweating, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, abdominal cramps, eye and skin irritation, eye pain, lack of appetite, dizziness, convulsions, low blood pressure, and possibly death.

She said this has necessitated the agency to put in place regulatory measures, which include the immediate ban on the importation and manufacture of Sniper and all other Dichlorvos in 100ml packsize only which was found to be readily available in unauthorised places.

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In addition, she disclosed that the agency has put in place measures against misuse and misapplication of this hazardous agrochemical. This includes a ban on hawking and prohibited sale of crop protection products in the open market and supermarkets nationwide.

She said the agency also embarked on sensitisation workshops in collaboration with relevant stakeholders on safe and responsible use of crop protection products on agricultural commodity storage, conducted for farmers, grain merchants and aggregators in seven locations across the country.

‘’NAFDAC in collaboration with relevant stakeholders organised two sensitisation workshops for agro- input dealers on safe and responsible use of crop protection products in Kano and Oyo States prior to the outbreak of Covid-19. However, this will be extended to the other parts of the country when the condition is more favorable.’’, she said.

Adeyeye emphasised that Dichlorvos were mainly for insect control in food storage areas, greenhouses, and barns, and for parasite control in livestock, insisting that Dichlorvos were generally not used on outdoor crops.

She lamented that despite several warnings by the agency, some traders have continued to misuse and misapply the banned agrochemical to preserve foodstuffs, thereby endangering the lives of unsuspecting consumers.