The World Food Programme (WFP) is going to destroy 20,000 tons of a so-called “super cereal” which has been blamed for five deaths and 300 illness reports in Uganda.
The destruction will begin “shortly,” a WFP spokeswoman on Monday said.
On Friday, the UN agency said five people died and around 300 fell sick after eating super cereal distributed in Ugandas’ Karamoja region in March and April.
“The probable cause of the sickness was contamination of Super Cereal by tropane alkaloids during harvesting or production.
“This contamination can occur when wild plants from the Solanaceae family enter the food supply chain,” WFP said.
The UN agency describes super cereal as maize or wheat blended with soya beans, fortified with vitamins and minerals and processed into a flour.
It said it was used to prevent malnutrition, especially among women and children, and is usually eaten as porridge or pancakes.
“This was an extremely unfortunate and unprecedented event in the history of WFP food assistance,” Amir Abdulla, Deputy Executive Director of WFP, said in the Friday on statement.
“WFP is deeply saddened by the loss of life and suffering among vulnerable communities, who count on food assistance in one of the poorest areas of Uganda,” he added.