Laide Raheem, Abeokuta
A veterinary doctor and animal health expert, Olatunde Agbato, has decried the low consumption of egg among Nigerians which, according to him, remains the best source of protein.
Agbato, who is also the President of Animal Care Services Konsult, said that Nigeria is among the lowest egg consuming countries in the world, stressing egg could bridge the nutritional deficiencies among Nigerians.
He stated this during the 2019 World Egg Day ceremony and the unveiling of three new innovations of FUNTUNA Egg Brand, held at Ogere-Remo, Ogun State.
He expressed concern over the 60 eggs per Nigerian per annum statistic, saying efforts must be made to encourage Nigerians to increase their egg consumption to at least 200, closer to the 360 global recommendation.
According to him, Nigeria must follow the steps of countries such as China, India and Mexico, which have increased their egg production and consumption to 300, 350 and 380 per person per annum.
Agbato, who said poultry farmers in Nigeria should be asisted by the government at various levels, urged Nigerians to eat more eggs for their daily nutritional needs.
“Nigerians are not eating enough eggs. There is a serious gap in the global recommendation of 360 egg consumption per individual in a year. Our country is doing 60, while China and India are doing 300 and 350, respectively. Even Mexico, with a population of almost 180 million, is doing 380, above the global recommended consumption.
“The misconception that the presence of cholesterol in egg makes it unsafe for consumption, particularly for people in a certain age bracket, had been proven to be untrue. Nutritionists all over the world have proved, through research, that cholesterol in egg is not only healthy, but is essentially needed to neutralise bad cholesterol in the body. So, let’s cultivate the habit of including egg in our daily diet for healthy living,” the expert said.
On the three new innovations by the company, Agbato explained that the automated hard boiled egg, shrink wrapping package and best-before-dateline labeling on individual eggs, were to ensure egg snacking, environment-friendly packaging and consumer protection.