In Summary
  • The board must improve quality and three, those NCPB officials responsible for grain contamination must face the law.

The National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) is in the spotlight once again over poor grain storage leading to aflatoxin contamination.

Investigations by the Kenya Bureau of Standards (Kebs) indicate that the country risks losing grain worth some Sh7.6 billion due contamination arising from poor conditions in which they were stored at the NCPB silos.

This is shocking and demands drastic action with the culprits punished.

NCPB is the main buyer and stockist of grains. Last year, it bought some six million bags of maize from farmers for storage and eventual sale to traders.

But with NCPB’s poor storage facilities, millions of bags bought with public money and stored at the board’s godowns have been adulterated, hence unfit for consumption.

That waste is humongous and cannot be wished away. Not that NCPB is not aware of this.

PUBLIC HEALTH

It knows pretty well the conditions for proper storage and the dangers inherent in exposing the foodstuff badly. Yet it fails to observe those standards.

For one, the government has lost billions of taxpayers’ shillings through sheer negligence by the cereals board, which is not acceptable.

At present, the country is faced with dire financial constraints and the accent is prudence and frugality in management of public resources.

Page 1 of 2