The National Agency for Food, Drug Administration and Control, NAFDAC, said it will commence random sampling of Indomie noodles, including the seasoning, from the production facilities.
This is coming on the heels of the recalling of indomie noodles by Taiwan and Malaysian authorities, following the discovery of ethylene oxide, a cancer-causing agent.
Announcing this in a statement, the Director-General of the agency, Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye, who explained that the compound of interest was ethylene oxide said, already, the Director of the Food Lab Services Directorate has been engaged and has started working on the methodology for the analysis.
Adeyeye said: “Indomie noodles have been banned from being imported into the country for many years. It is one of the foods on the government prohibition list. It is not allowed in Nigeria, and therefore not registered by NAFDAC.
“What we are doing is an extra caution to ensure that the product is not smuggled in, and if so, our post-marketing surveillance would detect it. We also want to be sure that the spices used for the Indomie and other noodles in Nigeria are tested.
“That is what NAFDAC Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, FSAN, and Post Marketing Surveillance, PMS, are doing this week at the production facilities and in the market, respectively.”
She, however, promised that Nigerians will be duly updated with the outcomes of the investigation.
According to the World Health Organisation, WHO, ethylene oxide is a colourless, highly reactive and flammable gas widely used as an intermediate in the production of various chemicals.
WHO, in a report, noted that findings from animal investigations, test systems, and epidemiological findings suggested an increase in the incidence of human cancer.
It also added that the report concludes that ethylene oxide should be considered a probable human carcinogen and that its levels in the environment should be kept as low as feasible.