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Why Cooked Food Shouldn’t Be Refrigerated for More Than Three Days – NAFDAC

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The Director General of the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), Prof Moji Adeyeye, has cautioned Nigerians against storing cooked food in refrigerators for more than three days. Her warning comes as part of activities marking the 2024 World Food Safety Day, themed ‘Food Safety: Prepare for the Unexpected’.

Adeyeye highlighted the risks associated with prolonged storage of cooked food, stating, “Cooked food stored for too long can become contaminated with harmful pathogens, leading to foodborne diseases that can be fatal.”

She stressed the importance of prompt refrigeration and timely consumption to mitigate these risks.

The World Food Safety Day, established by the United Nations General Assembly task force in 2018, aims to raise global awareness about food safety and encourage actions to prevent, detect, and manage foodborne risks.

“Focusing on food safety is crucial for public health, as it helps prevent foodborne illnesses and ensures safe consumption,” Adeyeye emphasised.

She called for collective efforts from all stakeholders across the food supply chain – from producers to consumers.

Echoing the sentiment of collective responsibility, Mrs Eva Edwards, Director of Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, underscored the preventable nature of foodborne diseases.

She urged, “Let’s all play our part in promoting the culture of good hygiene practices in our homes, communities, and food establishments.”

The campaign’s slogans, “Food safety is everyone’s business” and “Food safety is a shared responsibility,” reinforce the need for collaborative action to build a resilient food safety system.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), unsafe food results in approximately 600 million illnesses and 420,000 deaths globally each year, highlighting the economic and health impacts of foodborne diseases.

Edwards concluded, “Together, we can ensure a safer and healthier food supply for everyone,” emphasizing the importance of hygiene and proper food handling practices.

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