The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has banned the registration of alcohol in sachet and small volume PET, glass bottles below 200ml, amidst other stringent regulatory measures.
The move by the food and drug regulator is part of measures to curb the abuse of alcohol across the country.
This was made known in Abuja by the Director-General of NAFDAC, Professor Mojisola Adeyeye, who explained that the registration of new alcoholic drinks in sachet and small volume PET and glass bottles above 30% ABV (alcohol by volume).
Adeyeye said the ban was effected following the recommendation of a high powered Committee of the Federal Ministry of Health and NAFDAC on one hand, Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) and Industry represented by the Association of Food, Beverages and Tobacco Employers (AFBTE), Distillers and Blenders Association of Nigeria (DIBAN) in December 2018.
She further stated that the Agency will ensure that the validity of renewal of already registered alcoholic products in the affected category will not exceed the year 2024.
Adeyeye explained that Manufacturers of low volume alcohol beverages (200ml) with satisfactory Laboratory reports, which were already submitted to NAFDAC for registration before this decision, have been directed to reformulate their products to stipulated standards free of charge.
The NAFDAC boss also pointed out that DIBAN has been given marching orders to embark on a nationwide intensive sensitization campaign against the consumption of alcohol by adolescents below the age of 18 years in the bid to stem the tide of alcohol abuse in the country.
She further explained that the producers of alcohol in sachets and small volumes agreed to reduce production by 50% with effect from January 31st 2020 while ensuring the products are completely phased out in the country by 31st January 2024.
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Recall that in September 2020, NAFDAC had announced plans to place a total ban on the production of alcohol drinks in sachets by 2023/2024, noting that the ban will be done in phases.
The NAFDAC boss revealed that alcoholic drinks in sachets are expected to be phased out by the end of 2023 or the first week of 2024 when they would no longer exist in the society.