Cereals from posho mills to be tested before milling – KBC
Intensive grain testing at local Posho factories will be stepped up in the coming days as the government tightens enforcement of food safety regulations.
Agriculture and Food Director General Kello Harsama said the increase in cancer cases in rural areas is attributed to high levels of aflatoxin in grains, especially maize and adulterated rice .
According to the Agriculture and Food Authority, most agricultural products on the Kenyan market are not fit for human consumption.
The authority’s chief executive, Kello Harsama, said the agency would begin to conduct vigorous and continuous testing of corn and other grains at local posho mills, especially those in rural areas.
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The decision is prompted by the high level of aflatoxin contamination in grains which has seen an increase in cancer cases.
Adulterated rice has also been named as the most contaminated food crop in the country’s market.
The regulator says unscrupulous traders have mixed locally produced rice with illegally imported rice, further compromising rice quality and safety standards.
AFA adds that more traders have been allowed to import maize into the country from neighboring countries and that there is currently an influx of the commodity into the country.
As such, efforts to test maize at border entry points across the country have been stepped up to ensure that only maize certified to comply with the country and regional safety standards enters the Kenyan market.
Farmers were encouraged to familiarize themselves with the best appropriate storage practices to minimize contamination of their produce and reduce post-harvest losses, which reduced their income.
AFA is currently organizing awareness meetings on food safety standards in major markets in Nairobi on the occasion of World Food Safety Day.
The awareness-raising exercise will also be carried out in key markets in the country’s main cities.
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