Food-Borne Diseases Cost Nigeria More Than You Can Imagine
Diseases from food does not only cost Nigerians their health, it carries heavy financial burden.
According to a report by World Bank, Nigeria and other low-income and middle-income countries across the world, especially in Africa and Asia, spend $110 billion, about 3.3 trillion naira in lost productivity and medical expenses in treating illnesses arising from unsafe food.
In a statement on the report made available to newsmen on Wednesday, the World Bank said that the new study found that the impact of unsafe food costs low and middle-income economies about $110 billion in lost productivity and medical expenses each year.
It added that a large proportion of the costs could be avoided by adopting preventive measures that improve how food was being handled from the farm to the fork.
Better managing the safety of food will also significantly contribute to achieving multiple Sustainable Development Goals, especially those relating to poverty, hunger and well-being, the bank said.
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“Food-borne diseases caused an estimated 600 million illnesses and 420,000 premature deaths in 2010, according to the World Health Organisation.
“This global burden of food-borne disease is unequally distributed. Relative to their population, low- and middle-income countries in South Asia, Southeast Asia, and sub-Saharan Africa bear a proportionately high burden.
“They account for 41% of the global population, yet 53% of all food-borne illness and 75% of related deaths,” the bank’s statement said.
It added that “unsafe food threatens young children the most: although children under five make up only 9% of the world’s population, they account for almost 40% of food-borne disease and 30% of related deaths”.
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