EHORECON Trains Health Officers on Prevention,Control of Mycotoxins in Food ,Environment - Living Environment

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Friday, September 17, 2021

EHORECON Trains Health Officers on Prevention,Control of Mycotoxins in Food ,Environment


By Ada Achanya

The Environmental Health Officers Registration Council of Nigeria (EHORECON), has trained environmental health officers on prevention and control of mycotoxins poisoning in environment and food products.

Speaking in Abuja recently in a two-day sensitization workshop on the prevention and control of mycotoxins poisoning in the environment and food products organised by the Environmental Health Officers Registration Council of Nigeria (EHORECON),the Minister of State for Environment, Sharon Ikeazor who was represented by her Special Adviser Priscilla Ochekpe has said that 25 per cent of diseases in Nigeria are caused by mycotoxins.

She said the workshop was necessary because the continuous rejection of Nigeria food products in the International market as the result of molds causing pressing food quality problems in the environment and high economic losses due to diseases induced by mycotoxins.

“Mycotoxins are toxic compounds that are naturally produced by certain types of moulds (fungi). They can grow on foodstuffs such as cereals, beans,nuts spices, offices and posed a great risk to human health.

“We must all be worried about the risk of environmental exposures experienced by those that consume or are exposed to food and food products that are contaminated with mycotoxins.

“ The ingestion of mycotoxin through food and inhalation of mycotoxins and other contaminants in the air might result in lung damage, allergic reactions such as irritation in the respiratory tract, eyes, and skin, and sometimes headaches.

“Exposure to all these contaminants could have harmful effects on vital organs and consequently on the overall human health and productivity”.

“The lack of knowledge by the public and private institutions about these moulds and the effect of the metabolites they produce is a great concern”,she said .

She urged environmental health officers to educate people on the negative effects of moulds and mycotoxins contamination in their environment.

The minister charged participants at the workshop to exchange ideas and come up with skills to monitor and detect safety risks associated with exposure to mycotoxin contamination and measure to containing it.

Also, speaking at the event EHORECON Registrar,Dr.Yakubu Baba, explained that mycotoxin was a public health responsibility accounting for about 25 per cent of diseases in the country.

Baba said the council was preparing its practitioners to be sufficiently knowledgeable to be able to effectively enlighten the public on the negative effects of mycotoxins in food and the environment.

“This will have value addition to service delivery as it will enhance our economy, tailored towards President Muhammadu Buhari’s vision of food security.

“It will also provide platforms where the youths are going to be engaged and take them out of poverty as part of security solutions.

The environmental health practitioners drawn from the sector of the food industry and food inspection will scale down this training to various communities so that people can be enlightened in the way to store their food and process the food needed for human consumption in a safer way, ‘’ he said.


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