NIGERIA – In a decisive move aimed at safeguarding public health, the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has announced a comprehensive crackdown on the importation, manufacture, distribution, sale, and use of alcoholic beverages packaged in sachets, PET, and glass bottles of 200ml and below.

The directive, spearheaded by Professor Mojisola Adeyeye, Director General of NAFDAC, underscores the agency’s commitment to curbing the detrimental effects of alcohol consumption, particularly among vulnerable populations.

Addressing the media at a press conference, Professor Adeyeye outlined the agency’s enforcement actions, which commenced on February 1, 2024, following the expiration of the grace period provided to manufacturers.

Shockingly, initial enforcement efforts revealed that certain manufacturers were still actively producing the banned products, despite the stipulated deadline. This blatant disregard for regulatory mandates has prompted NAFDAC to escalate its enforcement measures, including the possibility of legal prosecution.

Rationale behind the ban

The decision to ban alcoholic beverages in sachets and small bottles below 200ml stems from mounting concerns regarding their accessibility, affordability, and potential for abuse, particularly among underage individuals and commercial vehicle operators.

Professor Adeyeye highlighted the detrimental impact of alcohol consumption on youth development and public safety, citing data from the World Health Organization (WHO) linking alcohol abuse to a myriad of health and social issues.

NAFDAC’s decision to implement the ban aligns with recommendations put forth by a collaborative committee comprising stakeholders from the Federal Ministry of Health, the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission, and industry representatives.

Recognizing the urgency of the matter, the agency has embarked on a concerted effort to uphold regulatory standards and protect the welfare of Nigerian citizens.

As part of its enforcement strategy, NAFDAC has called upon individuals and entities in possession of banned alcoholic beverages and packaging materials to surrender them for destruction.

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