by Isi Esene
There are startling statistics coming from Professor Alfred Ihenkuronye, a food science expert, on the number of people who die from food poisoning in the country.
He said over 200,000 people die of this ailment annually.
The professor of Food Science and Technology at the Federal University of Technology (FUT) Minna, spoke yesterday at a sensitisation programme for food vendors operating in the Abuja Municipal Area Council (AMAC).
He attributed these deaths to improper processing, preservation, and service of food.
“There are many avenues through which foods can be contaminated. And when people eat these foods, they will have problems which may result in deaths.
“The way out is sensitisation and training. We sensitise people about the enormity of the problem and we train them on how to do things properly,” he said.
He pointed out the need for proper sensitisation of food vendors on the importance of hygiene and proper preservation of food served from their business premises.
This is even more pertinent in a country like Nigeria where many people buy their food from environments which are far from hygienic or ideal.
According to the Premium Times, a Nutritionist and Dietician at the AMAC Health Department, Martha Dogo, supported the professor’s assertion saying, “The AMAC Health Department will continue to train those involved in food processing and preparation in order to reduce the occurrence of food poison.”
But Dogo considers it the responsibility of the Abuja Environment Department of the council to inspect the environment which the food vendors operate.