Nakuru county mulls Bill on food safety
Nakuru County Government is working on a Bill that seeks to protect humans and livestock from consuming foodstuff and animal feeds contaminated with toxic substances, antibiotic residues and disease vectors.
The County Public Health Chief Officer Alice Abuku said they were crafting a new food safety policy that provides for stringent regulations to ensure foodstuff that fail to meet safety standards do not reach the market.
Abuku explained that the main objective of the ‘Nakuru County Food Safety Policy’ and ‘The Nakuru County Food and Feed Safety Quality Control Coordination Bill 2022’ was to protect consumers of food products from food borne illnesses or injuries related to food consumption.
Abuku stated at the county headquarters during a workshop that brought together various stakeholders to deliberate on the policy and the Bill that chemical and organic contaminants in food products could be partly to blame for the increase in cancer cases.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) notes that foodborne diseases are responsible for a comparable burden of illness, such as cancer and tuberculosis, in Africa, with young children bearing the brunt of it.
WHO further indicates that the resulting health cost implications and threat to productivity are incapacitating. If assented to, ‘The Nakuru County Food and Feed Safety Quality Control Coordination Bill 2022’ will ensure that there is thorough scrutiny of milk, meat, vegetables, and fruits’ suppliers to ascertain the safety of their produce.
Manufacturers of animal feeds will also be closely monitored to ensure that they comply with feed safety standards in their processes.
The Public Health Officer said that the Bill is necessary to ensure that food is safely produced, distributed, processed, marketed, and prepared for human consumption from the farm.