Posted by Dorothy Amadi

On July 31, 2015


The European Union has banned some food exports from Nigeria. A statement from the European Food Safety Authority says the food substances were banned because they contained ‘a high level of unauthorized pesticide.’

According to the punch newspaper which reported the ban, the following banned food items will expire in 2016

  • Beans,
  •  sesame seeds
  •  melon seeds
  •  dried fish and meat
  •  peanut chips and
  •  Palm oil.

This is a setback for a nation that desperately needs to expand its export basket to boost domestic agricultural activities and create jobs.
According to the European Food Safety Authority, the rejected beans were found to contain between 0.03mg/kg to 4.6mg/kg of dichlorvos pesticide, when the acceptable maximum residue limit is 0.01mg/kg. (For clearer understanding of Maximum residue limit visit: )

The global health body stated that unsafe food is linked to the death of about 2 million people annually. Food contaminants, such as harmful parasites, bacteria, viruses, prions, aflatoxins chemical or radioactive substances, are known to cause more than 200 diseases – ranging from infectious diseases to cancers.

The embargo is a reflection of our inability to adhere to global standards on Good Agricultural Practices (GAP), aim at keeping food safe for consumption.

As a way forward, we could follow the standard practice to meet local demand and for export. However, as a farmer / exporter, equip yourself with the right information at your disposal:

• Safe use of pesticides
• Pesticide application in compliance with Maximum residue limit (MRL) in food.
• Appropriate use of pesticides and alternatives available.
* Good Agricultural Practices (G.A.P)
* Standard Best Practices (S.B.P)
* Best Management Practices (B.M.P)
* Integrated Pest Management Multiple Tactics