By Modupe Gbadeyanka
Minister of Agriculture, Mr Audu Ogbeh, has disclosed that the Federal Government may have to place a ban on tomato paste brought into Nigeria from outside the country, especially from China, due to health concerns.
Mr Ogbeh said tomato pastes from that part of the world are of low quality, stressing that producers of the products from China were threatening local manufacturers.
The Minister informed members of the House of Representatives Committee on Agricultural Production and Services, chaired by Mr Mohammed Tahir Monguno, that a report by the National Agency for Food and Administration and Control (NAFDAC) affirmed this.
“The Chinese are the ones messing us up on tomato paste. Each time Dangote tries to produce, they lower their prices.
“There’s a report by NAFDAC on the quality of foreign tomato pastes. The report is very bad,” the Minister said.
“We think we have every reason in that report to ban foreign tomato pastes into the country. If you don’t ban it on health ground, you have to ban it on any other ground,” Mr Ogbeh told the lawmakers, who were at the Ministry on an oversight visit.
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