By Adanna Nnamani, Mow Ezu and Esther Akwete, Abuja
Sandra Corps member Enete was drinking a soft drink with friends at a neighborhood bar in Bassa, a village near Airport Road, Abuja, when she noticed it had a strange flavor to which she did not. wasn’t used to it.
When she asked her companions if their drinks had the same weird flavor, they all said no.
She turned on her phone’s flashlight to examine the bottle, and what she saw amazed her. There were particles in the drink resembling spirogyra.
She checked the expiry details only to see that the drink had expired more than six months previously. She caught the attention of the bar owner who blamed the suppliers. Enete spent the next two days treating chronic diarrhea linked to food poisoning.
This was one of the many unpleasant experiences consumers in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) have on a daily basis.
The case could be milder or worse, but the fact remains that it is disturbing how often expired products, especially consumables like drinks, ready meals and medicines, are sold in markets and stores. .
Cases of buying expired goods were even worse at roadside markets, especially at night and in traffic jams. Traders sell all kinds of expired and damaged products to unsuspecting customers, knowing that it would be difficult to trace them back to them.
Kenny Adams, a resident, revealed: “I have already bought so many expired edibles. I bought some without even knowing that they were expired while others I discovered later by checking the empty containers.
“Once I bought a medicine at the pharmacy and found out that it had expired.
I went to complain to the pharmacist that the medicine was expired but because it was already open they didn’t get it back. Only very few of them will collect these complaints.
“My advice to consumers is that they should always check the expiration date to make sure it is not near before buying from retailers. Retailers should also do the same when buying from wholesalers, because it has side effects. So it is better not to buy when the date is close to the expiration date.
Another resident, Exodus Ade, lamented: “Having an expired drink I bought was the worst. It was a horrible experience. I learned after tasting the drink. The taste was bothersome and sour, I had to throw it away.
“I didn’t come back to complain. I thought it wasn’t the retailer’s fault. I think retailers should always do proper checks before buying or selling their products to individuals for the safety of consumers and retailers as well.
Raymond Amos: “I bought an expired product and the experience was not pleasant because I had the impression of having been duped. I usually take them back to where I buy them if it’s nearby. If not, I throw it away.
“Sometimes I know it’s not the retailers fault. Since they buy a lot of products, they may check some of them and sometimes have no time to check at all. Some may have been in their stores for a long time and they may forget to check the date and just sell it to customers.
“When a retailer wants to sell, they have to check the dates to confirm before selling the products. The consumer should also check before buying the product. It’s also my fault because I don’t remember to check every time.
Another consumer, Miracle Ahmed, said: “Most of the time I bought expired soft drinks from roadside vendors. One of my experiences was very bad.
“I was very thirsty that day and couldn’t get any water. I had to buy a bottle of sparkling water. Due to the sunny weather, I didn’t bother to check the date before swallowing it in half.
“I started having a stomach ache when I got home. When I decided to take the remaining drink, I discovered that it contained small particles. I had to take drugs because it could be very bad for the human system.
“I wasn’t the only one who bought that exact drink from the vendor.
Since then, I have been very careful to check the expiry dates. Before buying any edible, I advise anyone to check the expiration dates. »
Mrs. Abimbola Odeyale, says: “I bought expired products several times. I remember buying a drink pack from a store for my daughter at boarding school. The drinks had expired and we weren’t aware until I called. She informed me that the drink I purchased had expired to the point of clearing mucus.
“It was painful because most of the time we go to stores, instead of buying on the side of the road, thinking we’ll get a better product. In the end, what you fear will always happen. Since then, I’ve learned my lesson to always check the dates on all the products I buy.
“When it’s a month before the expiry date, I don’t buy it. I make sure there are at least three months left before the expiration date. Most of these retailers, after purchasing the products at a lower price, stockpile them in anticipation of the price increase.
“That’s where the corruption starts. Wholesalers or retailers should stop hoarding products. They sell at the right time for the good of all.