Firm blames poor handling for dangerous peanut butter

Peanut butter on bread. The Government Chemist has confirmed the presence of aflatoxin, a poisonous substance, in peanut butter brand Nuteez, making it unfit for human consumption.

The Nuteez peanut butter brand, which has been recalled from supermarket shelves for contamination with cancer-causing aflatoxin, is now blaming distribution chains for the problem.

Jetlak Foods Limited, the Ruiru-based manufacturer of Nuteez, through its lawyer Kelvin Mogeni, said the high level of aflatoxin could have resulted from the poor storage of their products.

“The result of poor storage before they were tested could lead to the high aflatoxin results we are told. Local distributors in Nandi County may also be at fault because how they store the products cannot be blamed on the manufacturer,” he said.

Mr Linus Kogo, the Nandi County public health officer who sent the lab samples to the Government Chemist, on Thursday said the consignment was impounded during a routine inspection.

“We found them transporting cosmetics, juice and the peanut butter and asked for a medical certificate and food hygiene licence from their staff, which they did not have.

"We suspected contamination and tested random samples from just one batch whose results you have seen. We still have two other batches to test,” said Mr Kogo.

Jetlak managing director Anup Bid said the company manufactures food only and so distribution is never mixed with other products.

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