Kogi government says it has reinforced its agricultural produce laws to arrest adulteration of cashew nuts produced in the state.
Mr. Kehinde Oloruntoba, the state’s Commissioner for Agriculture made this known at a one-day workshop on “Cashew nuts Quality Control and Regulations” in Anyigba, Ikogi.
The workshop was organised by Federal Produce Inspection Service (FPIS) in the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment for farmers’ associations and others.
Oloruntoba, who was represented by Mr. Emmanuel Idenyi, the Permanent Secretary in the ministry, said that Nigerian cashew used to be the best and of the highest grade, “unfortunately, the quality had been on the ebb in the last two years.’’
To forestall further depreciation of quality, we came up with a lot of measures that will prevent and arrest the adulteration of our produce by producers from other states.
We are going to reinforce the produce laws. We will ensure 100 per cent compliance by arresting anyone collaborating or indulging in sharp practices, he said.
Mr. Idris Dafang, the Coordinator of the programme and Deputy Director in the FPIS said that the quality of cashew nuts from Nigeria at the international market has become an issue of great concern to the Nigerian government.
He said that the programme was necessitated by the serial rejection of cashew nuts from the country last year and the need to ensure that every produce leaving the shores of Nigeria met international standard.
Dafang said that there was a glut of cashew nuts in the international market in the last two years because some other countries went into cashew production.
He said that the trade was now highly competitive, adding that the quality cashew nut had become the main determinant for demand.