Dangerous Acid in Fanta, Sprite: Reps Probe Nigerian Bottling Company (NBC) - EazyFeeds

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Thursday 23 March 2017

Dangerous Acid in Fanta, Sprite: Reps Probe Nigerian Bottling Company (NBC)

A recent judicial verdict on the dangers of tak­ing Fanta and Sprite with Vitamin C has com­pelled the House of Repre­sentatives to constitute an Ad-hoc Committee to inves­tigate the quality of products from the Nigerian Bottling Company (NBC) Limited.
At Wednesday’s plenary, the Lower House adopted a motion titled: “Need to Pro­tect Nigerians From Harm­ful Effects of Fanta and Sprite Beverages Produced by the Nigerian Bottling Company.”
It was sponsored by Hon. Rotimi Agunsoye.

The lawmakers direct­ed the National Agency for Food and Drug Adminis­tration and Control (NAF­DAC) to quickly investigate the chemical composition of carbonated drinks manufac­tured and sold in the coun­try.
The Federal High Court, Lagos had ruled that the NBC should impose a warn­ing on its Sprite and Fan­ta labels that taking the soft drinks is dangerous to one’s health because of the pres­ence of higher levels of ben­zoic and ascorbic acids in the products.
Moving the motion, Agunsoye said that Fanta and Sprite produced by the NBC contains 250 mg/kg as against the internationally-accepted 150mg/kg of the two acids, adding that the court ordered that NBC to inscribe on both products that consumers cannot take them with Vitamin C.
The lawmaker recalled that the NBC’s products were tested by Stockport Metro­politan Borough Council Trading Standard Depart­ment of Environment and Economy Directorate in the United Kingdom and found them to be harmful for hu­man consumption.
Agunsoye said as repre­sentatives of Nigerians, the House should carry out an independent investigation into the quality of the prod­ucts since it had been de­scribed as dangerous to hu­mans in another country.
Hon. Archibong Hen­ry, who supported the mo­tion, expressed displeasure that the NBC had explained in court that the products which failed tests in the UK weren’t produced for export.
He said: “What they are trying to say is that Nige­rians are animals. Judging from Nigeria’s large popu­lation, you can imagine the huge amount of money NBC makes from sales, yet their response, was that the drinks were not to be sold outside the country.”
The Minority Leader, Hon. Leo Ogor and Hon. Aminu Shehu Shagari, urged caution and appealed to the House to only take a position after the committee presents its report.
Shagari said that with the advent of the social media, a few products had been de-marketed through uncon­firmed stories on them.
He said: “Now, we have heard of plastic rice. So, we have to be careful, investigate and wait for whatever the committee comes up with.”
The Majority Lead­er, Hon. Femi Gbajabiami­la, said that with the court ruling, the danger posed by consuming Fanta and Sprite with Vitamin C had been proven.
Gbajabiamila said that “Nigerians should not be ex­perimented with. Life is sa­cred and we have the man­date to protect the people.”
The House however re­jected the suggestion by Hon. Femi Fakeye, that the law­makers should order the sus­pension of the distribution of Fanta, Coke and Sprite un­til its investigation was con­cluded.
The Federal Ministry of Health had on Saturday clar­ified the position of govern­ment on the matter, when it certified both drinks safe for consumption.
The action of the Feder­al Government came after a court judgement on the case filed by Fijabi Holdings and another against NBC and NAFDAC.
The ministry, in a state­ment signed by the Director Media and Public Relations, Akinola Boade, said investi­gations it conducted showed that both benzoic acid and ascorbic acid (Vitamin C) are ingredients approved by the International Food Safety regulators and used in many food and beverage products across the world.

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