The federal Airports Authority of Nigeria, FAAN, has revealed plans to revalidate the permit given to food vendors at the nation’s airports as health safety concerns have been raised by users of these airports.
There have been allegations that some foods produced and supplied by food vendors at the airports were bad for human consumption.There have also been complaints by passengers who alleged that some meals served onboard were stale, expired or contaminated.
Speaking at the maiden Airport Food Safety Awareness programme at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, the Managing Director, FAAN, Captain Hamisu Yadudu said it has become important to bring together operators of food outfits and suppliers to educate them to ensure safety compliance in the production and supply of foods to their clients and customers.
Represented by his Chief of Staff, Nehemiah Auta, Yadudu said the authority would henceforth subject operators to routine six months medical examination to ascertain their fitness and personal hygiene because of the safety implications of their business. He stated that FAAN would continue to collaborate with the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority ( NCAA), NAFDAC, Port Health Services , Lagos State Safety Commission and other stakeholders to ensure that persons approved to supply food at the airports complied with world class health, regulatory, and environmental prerequisites.
According to him, : “Any food vendor found to be involved in selling any food at airports that results in poisoning or contamination will be shut. All operators must submit their food, personnel to medical screening.This can only be achieved if we are able to identify and control factors that mitigate against food poisoning , which threatens the welfare and survival of our staff and customers .”
In her presentation, a resource person, Ms Agharese Lucia Ojelede, while speaking on the topic: ” Aviation Industry and Food Safety: Connecting the link”, canvassed routine inspection and audit of food vendors at airports as part of efforts to keep them in check.
Ojelede said: “FAAN has to look at the quality of food sold at the airports. If there are infractions in service, people need to know who to report to for remedial action because of hazards that could lead to injury or loss of lives.”