Monday, 25 December 2017

Fake ‘Anambra rice’ fulls Eke Awka, other markets--experts

Image result for pictures of Anambra rice

By Okechukwu Onuegbu

Buyers and consumers of locally produced rice have been warned to be weary of some fake produced brand of ‘Anambra rice’ currently in circulation across markets in the country.

The Anambra State Fadama III Additional Financing (AF) Project Coordinator, Chukwuka Patrick Egbue, who gave the warning in an interview with news48hrs.com, said there was possibility that ‘enemies of progress’ could capitalize on high demands and supply of the produce to market substandard ones this period of festivity.

news48hrs.com recalled that the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) had earlier warned Anambra State government to suspend production and distribution of its acclaimed ‘Anambra rice’ following a petition forwarded to the agency by Stine Industries, Nnewi, over the alleged counterfeiting and illegal use of it trade mark by the state government in producing and repackaging of substandard rice.

Egbue, who observed that both the unit and state ministry of Agriculture was yet to receive former reports of sold fake Anambra rice, enumerated some licensed milers of ‘Anambra rice’ to include Wisdom, Stine and Udoka industries, and adviced buyers to only patronize them or the state ministry of agriculture or risk endangering their lives through consumption of unsafe products.

He further urged the general public to endeavour to report any counterfeiting or illegal locally produced rice to the ministry not minding the personality or company producing or marketing the products.

“I charge the consumers of Anambra rice to look up to the logo and crest on the bags of the rice they are buying. They should only buy from our authorized companies and their distribution networks or from the state ministry of Agriculture because it has the high quality ones in large quantities. They should not buy anyone without our original logos and crest.

“Our people should also help us with vital information regarding distributions or productions of fake Anambra rice. They should not keep quiet on discovering that the substandard products were made by our licensed milers. We have charged the milers to open offices across markets and streets, and to include their addresses, phone numbers and our official logo on the bags of rice they are selling. These will help us to track them and fake ones as well,” he added.

Speaking on why there was reduction in the price of ‘Anambra rice,’ compared to price of the commodity during the 2016 Christmas and New Year festivity, Egbue claimed that the products were currently at surplus in the market courtesy of the state farmers adaptation to mechanised agriculture, training and empowerment, Fadama programmes, rural road constructions, amongst others.


News48hrs.com had in a market survey at Eke Awka main market discovered that 50kg bags of ‘Anambra rice’ brand produced by different companies such as Coscharis, Stine and Udoka, were sold for N17, 000, N16, 000 and N15, 000, while few others without NAFDAC numbers on their bags sold at cheaper rate. 

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