A large consignment of vegetables and other edibles exported from Nigeria to the United Kingdom, were at the weekend returned due to failure to meet up with international procedures.
This is coming exactly 10 months after some consignment of yam exported to the United States, were also rejected due to poor quality.The produce, estimated to be about N5m include: pumpkin leaf, waterleaf, bitter leaf, local pear, garden eggs, wrapping leaf and others.
The Nigerian Agricultural Quarantine Service (NAQS), which disclosed this at a press briefing, said the produce were rejected on the ground that they were not accompanied with phytosanitary certificate and not due to poor quality
NAQS Head of Inspection, South West Zone, Dr. Moses Adewumi, said internationally, the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) requires that in the movement of agricultural produce or commodities around the world, the commodities should be free from pest.
“In this case, we have up to about 41 International Standard For Phytosanitary Measures (ISPM), which guides the movement of commodities.
“When you are sending commodities outside the country, the international procedure is that it must be accompanied with phytosanitary certificate, that is the health of the commodity being exported. Any commodity not accompanied by the certificate is illegal.
“That is why all these consignments were returned to the country because most of them were not accompanied with phytosanitary certificate.”
He noted that the NAQS was trying to make exporters and people coming to the business to be aware that they needed to get the certificate when sending agric commodities outside Nigeria.