Sniper Beans: Farmers' Association Move To Stop Sellers
When Europe banned Nigeria's grains from coming in, people were not sure of the kind of insecticide that the EU had identified as one of its reasons for the decision.
Years down the line, a video of some persons adding Sniper insect killer as a preservative in beans meant to be sold to people surfaced and that video is still fresh in mind.
One group that is now worried over the incident is the Cowpea and Beans Farmers, Processors and Marketers Association of Nigeria and it has identified a few things Nigerians must do to get rid of the Sniper Beans from the market.
Mr Shitu Kabir is the National President of the association and he described as worrisome, the resurgence of killer beans in Nigerian markets.
He stressed that it must be treated as a matter of urgent national importance in view of the risks they pose to human life.
"It is time for us as a country to begin to look at what we eat.
"It is also time for us to pay a close look at the chemicals we use in our farms, at home and offices.
"The recent discovery of sniper beans in the market is very worrisome and all hands must be on deck to create adequate awareness on the killer beans and other harmful practices that many people are not aware of.
"The use of chemicals in Nigeria generally calls for concern as many Nigerians do not pay attention to the type of chemicals they use.
"Even when the chemicals used are not banned, many people do not stick to the required quantity," Mr Kabir told the News Agency of Nigeria.
Kabiru said that the association deemed it necessary to organise a forum to bring major stakeholders together to chart the way forward.
He said that beyond the forum, there was the need for collaboration among the relevant agencies like Nigeria Customs Service, National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC).
According to him, others are Standard Organisation of Nigeria, Association of Cowpea and Bean Farmers Processors and Marketers.
“The meeting we held had these organisations in attendance and the essence is to find lasting solution to the problem.
“We are expecting that the agencies that the association called will brace up in their activities.
“We expect NAFDAC to brace up in its activities, especially the type of chemicals they give licenses to and who the operators are.
“For the Customs, it should look at our borders to ensure that foods are tested before they are imported and to ensure that chemicals that are banned are not imported.
“We are also looking at quarantine to also provide good storage and other relevant things.
“For the Ministry of Agriculture is up and doing on this and last week we had a meeting with them on how to ensure that the food we eat is safe.
“We are also working with the media to create more awareness while chemical distributors and manufacturers are also being carried along," he stated.
The president said that it was time experts began to discuss on going organic ways to avoid the dangers of using chemicals in farm produce.
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