Kenya has issued a ban on maize from Tanzania and Uganda over concerns about falling food safety standards, APA can report on Monday.According to the Tanzanian government it has not been officially notified to this effect.
But the Kenya Agriculture and Food Authority, through the commissioner of customs at the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) has been issued with instructions to deny access to trucks laden with foodstuff bound for the country from Tanzania and Uganda.
Kenya Food Authority officials claimed that food items from the two countries contain “high levels of mycotoxins that exceed safety limits”.
Mycotoxins, particularly aflatoxins and fumonisins have been found to be casinogenic and could cause acute illnesses which could result in fatalities.
Tanzania’s Deputy Minister of Agriculture, Hussein Bashe had visited the Namanga Border crossing point over the weekend to confirm the ban on trucks ferrying maize to Kenya.
Mr Bashe said although there was no direct communication with Kenya over its banning decision, his ministry will take up the issue with the Kenyan authorities.
Bashe’s permanent secretary Gerald Kusaya Kenya has not stated when and where the tests that discovered the mycotoxins had taken place.
Tanzania is looking to involve the regional East African Community to which Kenya is a member in the negotiations to end the ban which could hurt the country’s already struggling Covid-19-stricken economy even more severely.
In the second quarter of last year Kenya imported 44,740 metric tonnes of white maize from countries in the region.