By Mustapha K Darboe
BANJUL, Gambia (AA) – The Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TIKA) has donated laboratory equipment to support Gambia’s only groundnut oil processing factory.
The equipment and consumables worth about $40,345 will allow the company to test its product for Aflatoxin, a family of toxins which may cause cancer.
Aflatoxin affects Gambia’s farming community and often the country’s groundnut products are denied entry into European markets because of it.
“If we are able to reduce the presence of Aflatoxin in groundnuts, farmers’ incomes will improve because it would mean the groundnut products will have a good price. And also the health risk associated with Aflatoxin will be mitigated,” said Anthony Carvalho, the managing director of the National Food Security, Marketing and Processing Corporation.
Carvalho said the donated equipment and consumables greatly enhance their Aflatoxin mitigation program.
Turkish ambassador to the Gambia Ismail Sefa Yuceer said the Turkish government is pleased to support Gambia’s drive to ensure food security and safety for its population.
“With the opening of a new TIKA office in Gambia, we are hoping our cooperation in many areas will strengthen,” added Yuceer.
The donated equipment include Aflatest columns, fluometer, and wash bottles.