NAFDAC stops Importation on Indomie noodles over safety concerns

By Oghale Mafuru

Nigeria’s National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has restated that importation of Indomie noodles remained banned in Nigeria as part of precautionary measures to prevent its consumption following a recent discovery of cancer-causing substances in the chicken flavour of the brand by health authorities in Malaysia and Taiwan.

Mojisola Adeyeye, Director General of the regulatory agency confirmed that although investigations into the products will commence in Nigeria from Tuesday, 2 May, the products remain banned from being imported into the country.

She added that there are also plans to ensure the spices used for the Indomie and other noodles in Nigeria are tested.
“What we are doing is an extra caution to ensure that it is not smuggled in and if so, our post-marketing surveillance would detect it.

“That is what NAFDAC Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (FSAN) and Post Marketing Surveillance (PMS) are doing this week at the production facilities and in the market respectively,” she said.

Reacting to the development, the management of Dufil Prima Foods Plc, makers of Indomie Noodles in Nigeria, has said its products are 100 per cent locally produced and are safe for consumption.

Temitope Ashiwaju, Group Corporate Communications and Event Manager for Dufil Prima assured that the Indomie noodles consumed in Nigeria are not imported into the Nigerian market and that those produced locally are safe for consumption.

According to him, the company conducts independent market research and also works closely with NAFDAC and other regulatory agencies in the country to ensure the product is safe for consumption.

He said: “We understand the news about Malaysia and Taiwan is raising doubts about the products in Nigeria, so we will work with these agencies to ensure doubts are cleared among Nigerian consumers.
“In the past 25 years, we have been producing and manufacturing Indomie noodles in Nigeria and we have done well”.

Recall that it was reported recently that the Taiwan and Malaysian authorities had stopped the sale of the chicken flavour of the products following the detection of ethylene oxide, a substance known to cause cancer, in the product.
The health department in Taipei, Taiwan’s capital, had said it detected ethylene oxide in two types of instant noodles, including the Indomie chicken flavour, following random inspections.

It said the detection of ethylene oxide in the product did not comply with standards.

Ethylene oxide is a colourless, odourless gas that is used to sterilize medical devices and spices and has been described as a cancer-causing chemical.


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