The Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) has intensified its effort against unfortified sugar raiding bakeries across the country.
The Director General, SON, Osita Aboloma, explained that this move is part of its activities to ensure Nigerians get access to quality nutrients that would improve nutrition and health benefits of the citizenry.
The nationwide raid saw about 16 Bakeries located in Okota, Isolo, Festac, Mile 2 and Lasu Isheri areas of Lagos raided in search of unfortified sugar products.
Aboloma, said the action was to ensure that these products do not get into the hands of consumers while also acknowledging that sugar is a potential vehicle for fortification with vitamin A to control and guard against vitamin A deficiency.
The SON boss represented by the coordinator, Surveillances Intelligence and Monitoring (SIM) unit, SON, Isa Suleiman, said the agency would not relent on its effort until this unwholesome malpractice is reduced to the barest minimum.
“Two days ago, we raided quite a number of shops and we were able to evacuate certain quantity of unfortified sugar, so in continuation of that exercise, we were able to trace this particular premises and courtesy of our surveillance and intelligence report, we learnt the perpetrators had moved from their previous location and we kept following up and sometimes trailing the vehicles they use, ” he said.
“So far, we have evacuated a thousand bags of sugar. This exercise is going to continue until when we bring these unwholesome malpractices to the barest minimum because of the negative effect of the substandard nature of the sugar.
“They are unfortified and they have impurities. They also do not meet our NIS requirements. This is just an operation of a night and you can see that not all the rooms are filled up.
This unwholesome practice is a regular act for them and evacuating them will be a regular exercise for us until we make sure that they are out of business,” he added.
Recall that SON conducted an aggressive nationwide evacuation of unfortified food products, a move the Director General said was in line with both the present administration and international organisation’s food fortification programme at ensuring that Nigerian children and women have access to basic nutrients and vitamins for health and development.