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The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) on Thursday declared that Nigerian made Indomie noodles safe for human consumption, saying the noodles do not contain ethylene oxide.

It could be recalled that Malaysia and Taiwan health officials had announced that they had detected ethylene oxide in Indomie’s special chicken flavour noodles.

Ethylene oxide is a colourless and odourless gas that is used to sterilise medical equipment and plastics. It is said to be a cancer-causing chemical.

Meanwhile, the Director-General of NAFDAC, Mojisola Adeyeye, said the agency would begin random sample tests of the noodles from May 2.

However, speaking with newsmen on Thursday, the director-general stated that during the probe, samples of chicken flavoured instant noodles of various brands, and the seasonings were drawn from the production facilities across the country, adding that the exercise was to ensure that the investigation was robust and cover other instant noodles brands manufactured in Nigeria, besides Indomie.

Adeyeye also said the agency visited markets and retail outlets in the major cities of Lagos, Abuja, and Kano and drew samples of instant noodles for laboratory analysis.

She said, “The market visits served as surveillance for the presence of the Taiwan and Malaysian special chicken noodles in the Nigerian market.”

“The samples drawn from production facilities and trade were properly packaged and delivered in good condition to our central laboratory, Oshodi, Lagos, where analytical activities commenced immediately in accordance with international standards and methods of analysis.

“The technique using gas chromatography with mass spectrometry detector was deployed.

“A total of 114 samples of instant noodles and the seasonings were received.

“We did not only analyze for ethylene oxide and its derivative 2-chloroethanol in the noodles and seasonings; we also analysed for other contaminants such as mycotoxins and heavy metals in the samples.

“Ethylene oxide or its derivative was not found in any of the instant noodles produced in Nigeria and their seasonings.

“The level of mycotoxin and the heavy metals were within the internationally acceptable limit. Therefore, the noodles made in Nigeria are very safe to eat.”

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