Ndugulile made the call yesterday when speaking at the opening of regional training on residues of pharmacologically active veterinary substances in offal, which brought together 30 experts from 22 African countries at TFDA headquarters in Dar es Salaam.
He said drug residues in the food chain are hazardous to human beings with governments worldwide striving to put measures that will protect public and animal health by all means.
“The first challenge is ensuring that our farmers practice good animal husbandry- failure of which has resulted into increased levels of veterinary drug residues in animal offal, while other challenge is capacity to test veterinary drug residues in our laboratories," he said.
He called for a set-up of a robust surveillance system and laboratory capacity in the country that will be able to detect veterinary drug residues, in fighting both the existence of such poor quality and unsafe products in food chain.
According to him, despite the tremendous achievement registered by Tanzania Food and Drug Authority (TFDA) in setting-up the laboratory for testing regulated products there are still notable gaps that needs to be strengthened to ensure that the public is fully protected from consuming contaminated or adulterated food products that may pose health risks.
TFDA acting director general Adam Fimbo, said the training is initiative of the government network with other stakeholders in Africa by establishing food safety network through regional training.
"The objectives of this training are to develop regional laboratory capabilities to test and monitor offal fir residues of pharmacologically active veterinary substance used in animal production; demonstrating selected nuclear and related analytical techniques to participants," he said.
For his part, TFDA's acting director of laboratory services Dr Yonah Hebron said the medicines used for animals have their own directives as humans, so the animals being given their medicines their products are not safe until the prescription is over.
“Animal products like poultry products, milk, eggs and honey have been imported from different countries of Africa, so we have met with our colleagues to discuss together and eventually find solutions to this problem ... we are continuing with an investigation to ensure that we are removing them from the marketplace," he insisted.