An expert in agriculture, Prof. Adewale Dipeolu, has called on National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) to begin certification of food vendors and hawkers across the country.
Dipeolu, a professor of Agricultural Management Productions, said this in Abeokuta on Wednesday, while delivering the 66th inaugural lecture of Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta (FUNAAB).
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the lecture is entitled: “Food Demand Decisions: Not only the numerics but the characteristics.”
According to him, certification of such group will ensure that only hygienic food is sold to the public.
He said that government agencies, such as NAFDAC and Consumer Protection Agency, should intensify efforts at ensuring that food sold in public spaces received due certification before circulation.
”This will reduce the selling of substandard and expired products. NAFDAC should extend its tentacles to the informal food markets, monitor and ensure adequacy in simple hygiene rules,” he said.
The don urged government to intervene in the sector, as was being done in other developing countries, through training, education and supervision of food vendors to raise the hygiene and profit levels in the informal food sector.
He also called on the Federal Government to, as a matter of urgency, encourage vendors to prepare foods in a more hygienic environment by providing them with better facilities, to ensure safety.
Such efforts, he said, should be preceded by a well- organised public food safety enlightenment programme for consumers and producers to raise awareness levels among them.
In his opening remarks, FUNAAB Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Kolawole Salako, said that Dipeolu had participated in several research and intervention projects, both at local and international levels.
Salako added that the inaugural lecturer had also served as external examiner at undergraduate and postgraduate levels in some universities.