Nigeria has concluded plans to adopt African standards on sugar and sugar products as well as develop Nigeria Industrial standards for glucose and sucrose.
The Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) said this in a statement posted on its website, a copy of which was obtained by newsmen on Tuesday in Abuja.
The statement said that a Technical Committee on sugar and sugar products met to consider the adoption of some African Standards under the auspices of African Organisation for Standardisation (ARSO) and the development of other Nigeria Industrial Standards.
It quoted Mr Osita Aboloma, the Director-General of SON as saying “the draft standards on sugar are very important as they affect everyday life due to their wide usage as sweeteners for human consumption and as raw materials along the food value chain’’.
According to Aboloma, the present trend in the processing of sugar has necessitated the elaboration of new standards.
This, he said was because the quality of raw materials along the food value chain, the technological procedures and the handling determines to a large extent as well as guarantees the quality of the finished products.
“It is, therefore, imperative for Nigeria to develop standards that take into cognisance these salient factors in a bid to forestall threat to life, waste of resources and to boost the quality of products both for local consumption and exports.’’
Aboloma commended Nigeria’s contribution to ARSO’s efforts to harmonise standards within the African continent to improve intra-African trading capacity, cross border products and services competitiveness and advancing the welfare of the people of the continent.
According to him, Nigeria stands to benefit from the adoption of these harmonised standards through increased trade opportunities and competitiveness of its goods and services at both the African, sub regional and global levels.
He said that the trade opportunities “are in line with the policy thrust of the government to diversify the economy and improve non-oil exports to which SON is in a key position of adding value through standardisation and quality assurance.
The standards considered for adoption at the meeting were: ARS 875-2017 Raw Cane Sugar, ARS 876-2017 Brown Sugar, ARS 58-2017 White Sugar Specification, and Determination of Lactose Content by High Performance Liquid Chromatography.
The draft Nigeria Industrial Standards also considered during the meeting were for glucose and sucrose.
Participants at the meeting included representatives of Institute of Public Analysts of Nigeria (IPAN), Federal Institute of Industrial Research Osodi (FIIRO), BUA Sugar Ltd., Dangote Sugar and National Agency for Food, Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC).
Other participants were drawn from Promasidor, Coca-Cola Nigeria, and Consumer Protection Council (CPC), Friesland Campina.
The meeting was chaired by Dr. Adepoju Oladejo of the College of Medicine, University of Ibadan.