NIGERIA – Following rigorous analytical activities and testing, the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has dissipated claims of the alleged presence of ethylene oxide in noodles and their seasonings.

The investigation was prompted by the recalls of Indomie Instant Noodles in Malaysia and Taiwan, citing concerns about the potential cancer-causing compound.

 NAFDAC conducted a meticulous examination of both locally manufactured and imported instant noodles to ensure the safety of Nigerian consumers.

Following the news of the product recalls, random sampling of Indomie instant noodles, as well as other brands available in Nigeria, was conducted at production facilities across the country.

This thorough approach aimed to cover a wide range of instant noodle brands, ensuring that no stone was left unturned in the quest for consumer safety.

In addition to the factory-level investigation, the Post Marketing Surveillance Division embarked on market visits in major cities like Lagos, Abuja, and Kano.

The team collected samples of instant noodles from retail outlets to monitor the presence of the implicated Taiwanese and Malaysian special chicken noodles in the Nigerian market.

A total of 114 samples, including both noodles and their seasonings, were collected for laboratory analysis. The samples were packaged and transported to the Central Laboratory in Oshodi, Lagos, where the analysis took place. To ensure the accuracy of the results, international standards and methods of analysis were followed, employing Gas Chromatography with Mass Spectrometry detection.

Findings confirm safety of Nigerian noodles

The analysis revealed that not a single sample of instant noodles produced in Nigeria, including their seasonings, tested positive for ethylene oxide or its derivative. This confirms the absence of the compound in locally manufactured noodles, ensuring their safety for consumption.

In addition to ethylene oxide, the laboratory also tested for other contaminants such as mycotoxins and heavy metals. The levels of these substances in the samples were found to be within internationally acceptable limits, further solidifying the safety of Nigerian-produced instant noodles.

NAFDAC addressed the delay in releasing the analytical report, assuring the public that it was not intentional.

The agency encountered logistical challenges in procuring certified reference materials, reagents, and chemicals from overseas, which caused the delay.

NAFDAC emphasizes that it will continue to monitor the Nigerian food industry diligently, taking swift action when necessary to ensure the safety and quality of food products available to the public.

“NAFDAC re-assures the public that the Agency is proactive and committed to her responsibilities of protecting the health of the public,” Adeyeye said in the press release.

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