Consumers Federation of Kenya (Cofek)

Cofek #RedAlert: Nestle Maggi noodles must not be consumed

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COLOURFUL KILLER? A pack of Nestle’s “Maggi 2-Minute Noodles” banned in US and India

Our attention is drawn to the revelation that packs of instant noodles examined by Uttar Pradesh Food Safety and Drug Administration in India has exceeded permissible levels of lead and contained monosodium glutamate unmentioned in the ingredients’ list.

Needless to emphasize: Lead is extremely dangerous, even fatal if ingested in large enough quantities. The permissible limit in Indian food is 2.5 parts per million and the examined batch of Maggi noodles is said to have had 7 times that much.

Lead, a toxic metal, can enter the digestive tract through contaminated food and water. Consumption, even at low levels, can result in hypertension, kidney damage and, in extreme cases, death, according to the World Health Organization.

Children are particularly vulnerable, WHO says, because their bodies absorb nearly five times as much lead as adults do.

In this regard, and aware that the India and US Maggi products are similar, if not the same, and or could be dumped within the region and Kenya, we hereby issue the following advisory;

  • THAT anyone who has already bought the Nestle Maggi noodles or any other noodles does not use them
  • THAT supermarkets and other retail chains must immediately remove the Nestle Maggi noodles from the shelves to save unsuspecting consumers
  • THAT consumers avoid buying and or use of Maggi noodles and or any other noodles until competent Government agencies undertake independent tests
  • THAT Kenya Bureau of Standards announces a formal product recall and spell the requisite sanctions for those using and distributing the same
  • THAT the Kenya Ports Authority and Kenya Revenue Authority and other relevant agencies stops further entry of the condemned product and further tacks any recent consignment into the country
  • THAT consumers across the country remain vigilant and uphold our red alert until the alert is reviewed.
  • THAT Kenya Radiation Board under the Ministry of Health gets out of its cocoon to address increasing radioactive substances in consumer goods

We are aware that Nestlé’s own studies provided contradictory figures, which is hardly surprising. We are also aware that there are other protected lead sources.

Kenyan consumers are equally exposed to lead poisoning mainly through paint. We demand that KEBS stops and enforces a total halt to the manufacture of paints containing lead.

Manufacturers of alternative or traditional Indian medicine known as “ayurvedic medications” used in Kenya are permitted to use toxic heavy metals like lead, mercury and arsenic, poisoning patients while claiming to heal them.  We urge Kenyan consumers to be wary of the same.

Finally, we are calling upon the Machakos Governor Dr Alfred Mutua and National Environment Management Authority to inform the public on how asbestos roofing removed from Machakos Level 5 Hospital were disposed. Asbestos is more dangerous than lead. Any breakages of the same that is inhaled is incurale.

Secretary GeneralJune 5, 2015, Nairobi

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