Tuesday, January 31, 2017 1:40 pm
A food science technologist has called for the enforcement of standard in the production of granulated cassava (Garri) to ensure its safety for consumption.
Dennis Balogu, Professor of Food Science and Technology, Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida University, made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Tuesday in Lapai.
Balogu urged the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) to show more concern in the way“Garri’’ was being processed in the interest of the consuming public.
“NAFDAC needs to enforce standard in the production of Garri to ensure that it is safe for consumption in the country.
“Garri should not be dried on the ground even after it has been fried; it must be well-fried for at least 50 minutes to one hour over intense heat to make it safe for drinking or eating,” Balogu said.
The food science technologist noted that some Garri dealers were in the habit of basking raw Garri on polythene sheets in the sun for hours to cut cost of production.
“With this process, there is the tendency for small air borne particles bearing tiny eggs of microorganisms that are harmful to the health to contaminate the Garri.
“Such microorganisms thrive when they find conducive place in the body,” he said.
He cautioned that solar energy was not suitable for processing some types of food and advised that sun-dried raw food should be re-cooked or re-dried over a cooking device to make it suitable for consumption.
“Members of the public need to always re-fry their Garri and the method of re-frying are simple; pour the quantity of Garri to be consumed in a small pot on the cooking device and stir it until the temperature is 145 degrees centigrade.
“The microorganisms will be eliminated under such intense heat and the Garri will be safe for drinking as porridge or eaten as pudding,” Balogu said.
He also advised Garri retailers to always use transparent polythene to protect it. (NAN)