Plan launched to mitigate ‘mycotoxins’

THE Tanzania Food and Drugs Authority (TFDA) and stakeholders have developed and validated the implementation of the National Action Plan for Mitigation of Mycotoxins.

TFDA Director General, Mr Hiiti Sillo, said in Dar es Salaam yesterday that the action plan would be implemented by different sectors for a period of three years. He said that the estimated budget for implementation of the activities falling under the first year is estimated at 4.52bn/-.

Mycotoxin (‘fungus’ and toxicon) ‘poison’) is toxic secondary metabolite produced by organisms of the fungus kingdom, commonly known as moulds. The term ‘mycotoxin’ is usually reserved for the toxic chemical products produced by fungi that readily colonise crops.

Mr Sillo was speaking during an official opening of the stakeholders’ workshop for management of mycotoxins in food in the country. The workshop is one of the initiatives for mycotoxins control in Tanzania.

The workshop came following the recent outbreak of acute aflatoxin poisoning which occurred in Dodoma and Manyara regions that resulted into 65 cases and 17 deaths with a case fatality rate of 26.2 per cent as of September 17, 2016.

“Following a directive from the minister, we just concluded collection of another batch of 694 food samples from 10 districts of the neighbouring areas which were affected by the outbreak,” said Mr Sillo, adding: “It is expected that results of analysis of these samples will determine the status of contamination and further provide the basis for advice on appropriate measures to prevent similar outbreaks.”

The opening function was graced by the Deputy Minister in the Ministry of Health, Community Development, Gender, Eldery and Children, Dr Hamis Kigwangala. In his remarks, the deputy minister said the government was fully committed to supporting TFDA financially, considering the importance of the health of Tanzanians.

In Dodoma and Manyara regions, Dr Kigwangalla said the government had made a thorough assessment and that food believed to have aflatoxin infections had been disposed

Plan launched to mitigate ‘mycotoxins’ Plan launched to mitigate ‘mycotoxins’ Reviewed by on 11:39:00 PM Rating: 5

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