Director General, Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON), Osita Aboloma, has commended the consumer who reported a beans vendor for using a pesticide for the preservation of the crop on sale to the police. A statement from his office in Abuja stated that such individual and collective awareness by consumers in general are essential for effective standards implementation and enforcement in Nigeria.
Aboloma urged Nigerians in general to take greater interest in their welfare by reporting to relevant regulatory and security agencies any suspected unwholesome, substandard or life-endangering products or practices.
According to him, there are relevant Nigerian Industrial Standard and Codes of Practice for beans along the value chain, to take care of issues concerning the proper preservation of the crop from planting to the table and assure the safety of consumers in Nigeria.
He listed the Standard and Codes of Practice to include standard for dry beans (NIS 1030: 2018), code of good agricultural practice: planting of dry beans (NCP 065: 2018); code of good practice: harvesting of dry beans (NCP 067: 2018); code of practice for packaging of dry beans (NCP 064: 2018); code of practice: storage and transportation of dry beans (NCP 066: 2018).
The Standard and Codes of Practices, which have been approved for use by the Standards Council, according to the statement, were results of consensus decisions by stakeholders, including, farmers, processors, Federal Ministry of Agriculture (FMoA) officials, regulatory agencies, academicians, research institutes and consumer advocates, among others, while SON officials provided the secretariat.
The SON Chief Executive Stated that arrangements are ongoing among the FMoA, other regulatory agencies and SON for a nationwide advocacy programme for farmers, processors and extension workers in States and Local Governments on the standard and codes of practice for beans and other grains.