Believe it or not, but over 100 bags of “plastic” rice have been seized by the Nigerian police while being smuggled into the country. The intercept has been made amid the skyrocketing food prices ahead of the Christmas and New Year holidays.
Each bad weighed 50 kilograms, and was branded “Best Tomato Rice”. There was also no date of manufacture or expiration.
Thankfully the bags were intercepted on Monday in the Ikeja area of the country, and a suspect was also arrested who was transporting the bags.
The officials warned that this brand of rice is certainly dangerous for human consumption, and they suspect that the bags were illegally shipped in from China through Lagos port.
Ikeja area customs controller Mohammed Haruna commented on the startling discovery,
“We have done a preliminary analysis of the plastic rice. After boiling, it was sticky and only God knows what would have happened if people consumed it.”
The food prices, in particular for the rice, have been rising exponentially, directly due to the banning of rice imports by Nigeria to boost their own produce. The galloping inflation can also be blamed for this heist, with a 50kg bag now selling for around 20,000 naira (US$63), which is more than double than what it cost just one year ago.
The customs service in Nigeria has sent samples of the fake rice to the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control for further analysis.