NAFDAC laments increase in fruits ripened with calcium carbide in Gombe

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From Abdulrazaq Mungadi, Gombe

The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has lamented the growing trend of fruits ripening with calcium carbide in Gombe state, hence calling on the public to shun consumption and patronizing identified sellers of fruits.

This was revealed by the Gombe State coordinator of the agency Mr. James Agada in an interview with newsmen on Tuesday in Gombe. He explained that the dangerous effects of carbide-ripened fruits include cancer, abdominal pain, and other illnesses.

He added that consuming such fruits can also cause heart, kidney, and liver failure. He said, “Throughout 2022 we were all out sensitizing and engaging the general public and the producers of various food products including these fruits sellers on the need to be cautious about public health and what their single act can cause to the public”.

Agada further disclosed that his agency has raided a greengrocer shop where calcium carbide was being used to ripen Banana and made one arrest and confiscated the products in the Gombe metropolis.

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He said, “While we warn farmers and sellers against the dangers of using such chemicals for ripening their fruits such as banana, mango, plantain, orange, and cashew, we are also calling on the general public to beware”.

“Just give the fruits some time and days they will naturally ripen, when you use chemicals to ripen your fruits the taste also gets affected,” the coordinator said while revealing that the public can identify artificially ripened fruits by the traces of powdery substances and how they peeled off quickly.

While assuring that the agency would continue to work hard in monitoring, regulating, and controlling substances of interest, he reiterated that NAFDAC is committed to safeguarding the health of Nigerians.

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