The National Quality Infrastructure Project in Nigeria in an initiative funded by the European Union (EU) and implemented by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) recently organised training on the use of Rapid Test Toolkits to determine mycotoxin and pesticide levels in agricultural produce.
The training which held in Zaria, Kaduna State, was within the context of the Conduits of Excellence, a quality control system that is one of the interventions to improve trade and diversification of the Nigerian economy. The initiative is carried out under the National Quality Infrastructure Project in Nigeria (NQIP), funded by the European Union (EU) and implemented by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO).
The toolkits provided by UNIDO are easy-to-use single-step devices for rapid and accurate qualitative testing.
The training process involved sample collection from a local market, equipment set up and the testing process. Trainees demonstrated three tests: Aflatoxin test on dried beans, pesticides residue test on dried beans and Deoxynivalenol/Vomitoxin (DON) test on wheat. The toolkits will aid storage facilities in proper assessment of the produce farmers make available for storage.
According to the statement, “In 2016, beans from Nigeria were banned from import to the European Union due to the excess of allowed limit of pesticides. With UNIDO’s intervention, the Draft Guideline on Conduits of Excellence on the Dried Beans Value Chain in Nigeria was prepared, and nationally adopted in 2017.”
“The implementation of the rapid testing system will be the first in Nigeria’s agricultural sector and will demonstrate the Conduits of Excellence in practice,” the statement said.