Our Reporter, Abuja
The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) says it has banned the importation of Indomie noodles to Nigeria following allegations of a cancer-causing chemical found in the noodles and non-registration of the agency.
This follows reports that the Health officials in Malaysia and Taiwan recently detected ethylene oxide, a compound in Indomie’s “special chicken” flavour noodles.
Ethylene oxide is a colourless, odourless gas that is used to sterilise medical devices and spices and is said to be a cancer-causing chemical.
The ministry of health in Malaysia had noted that it examined 36 samples of instant noodles from different brands since 2022 and found that 11 samples contained ethylene oxide.
Both countries had since recalled the product.
Speaking on the development, Mojisola Adeyeye, NAFDAC director-general, said the agency would begin random sample tests of the noodles and other brands from May 2.
Speaking with Newsmen on Monday, the NAFDAC boss said the regulatory body started investigating immediately it got wind of the recall of the products by Taiwan and Malaysia authorities.
“Tomorrow, May 2, 2023, NAFDAC’s food safety and applied nutrition directorate will randomly sample Indomie noodles (including the seasoning) from the production facilities while post marketing surveillance directorate (will) samples from the markets,” she said.
“The compound of interest is ethylene oxide, so the director, food lab services directorate has been engaged. He is working on the methodology for the analysis.”
Adeyeye said the product was on the prohibition list of the Federal Government, adding that it was not registered by the agency and had been banned from importation to Nigeria years ago.