NAFDAC uncovers illegal factory loaded with expired condiments
THE National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has uncovered an illegal factory within the Trade Fair Complex in Lagos loaded with various expired food condiments worth millions of Naira even as it arrested a 24-year-old, Mr. Victor Ebuka Okeke in connection with the expired products.
This was sequel to a special raid and enforcement operation in some markets in the metropolis by officers of the Investigation and Enforcement Directorate of the agency.
The factory, which was originally a one-room shop, was used to stock, re-validate and distribute expired products, particularly food condiments.
Some of the expired products discovered in the unhygienic factory include expired Maggi Sauce with manufacturing dates: August15, 2011 and expiry dates: August15, 2014, Amoy Dark Soy Sauce, Costa Corned Beef and Exeter Corned beef, among others.
For the Costa Corned Beef, whether expired or not, the suspect changed their labels to Exeter Corned Beef, which according to him, was to attract patronage to the Costa corned beef because it was a fast moving brand than the name Costa in the market.
Addressing journalists shortly after the exercise, the leader of the NAFDAC team and Assistant Director, Enforcement Operations, Mr. Shaba Mohammed, said the Agency has been on the trail of the alleged owner of the factory, following intelligence report on his activities in the market.
He revealed that the suspect, who also claimed to be the managing director of the factory, was caught re-validating the expiry dates of Maggi Aroma sauce and Amoy Soy sauce smuggled into the country from Ghana from expiry dates of 2014 to August 2016.
According to him the products expired since August 15, 2014.
“The suspect was also caught changing labels of Costa corned beef to Exeter corned beef,” he added
Mohammed, who said the suspect had refused to give useful information regarding the whereabouts of over 902 cartons of expired Maggi sauce already pushed into the market, said the agency would be charging him to court for counterfeiting offences.
“We have arrested the suspect and also evacuated the remaining products in the illegal factory. We are also charging him for counterfeiting. Some of the products were not registered by NAFDAC. The products were smuggled in from Ghana. What we found on ground here cannot be consumed.
We saw two drums filled with ordinary water which he uses to immerse the products and the labels will remove without any traces and are replaced with re-validated labels.”