5th October 2023
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NBS opts to destroy impounded toxic grains in Nimule

Author: Baria Johnson | Published: Thursday, June 15, 2023

Aflatoxin poisonous carcinogens in harvested corn kernels detected by scientist. | Conceptual image

The National Bureau of Standards is going to destroy the impounded food items from neighboring Uganda that tested positive for high aflatoxin at the border town of Nimule, Mary Gordon Murotat, the institution’s Executive Chief has said.

“Between the month of April and May, we tested 384 trucks, and out of those trucks 321 passed and 63 failed, so 63 are going for destruction,” she said.

Two weeks ago, South Sudan officials at the Nimule border point confiscated at least 120 tons of food items deemed unsuitable for human consumption.

Samples from the shipment were confirmed with high aflatoxin after the grains were subjected to several laboratory tests by the National Bureau of Standards.

“In those trucks that we have mentioned that have Maize, Sorghum, or whatever grains that have been tested and failed have to be destroyed,” she stressed, adding that “We detained the trucks for a very good reason because of the level of aflatoxin, especially B1 which is very very dangerous and it causes cancer if it accumulates in your body.

Gordon added that the truck drivers will be released, and the poisonous grain dumped according to certain procedures and standards to protect the environment.

“The government has decided to dump and destroy them accordingly,  but the procedures for the dumping will be followed according to standards,” while saying that “the truck drivers will be released. ”

In February this year, Ugandan food scientists found that maize, sorghum, and groundnuts produced locally pose a cancer risk.

The research by scientists at the National Agricultural Research Organisation (Naro) indicated that Ugandan grain contains 10 times or higher concentrations of aflatoxin than the safety threshold recommended by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

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