Public Health Physicians Back AJI-NO-MOTO Food Seasoning Safety

Public health physicians in Lagos State have dispelled rumours surrounding the use of AJI-NO-MOTO food seasoning, affirming that the umami seasoning is safe for consumption.

The physicians who spoke at the 2023 conference of the Association of Medical Officers of Health of Nigeria, (AMOHN), Lagos State chapter, said they were yet to see any scientific proof that showed consuming AJI-NO-MOTO food seasoning was unhealthy, urging Nigerians to work with facts and not heresay.

AMOHN is a body of public health physicians who serve as gatekeepers to primary healthcare, which is the bedrock of any responsive healthcare system.

Management of Ajinomoto Foods Nigeria Limited (AFN), an affiliate of a global food giant, Ajinomoto, and makers of the product also known as Monosodium Glutamate (MSG) took its safety awareness campaign to the physicians while reiterating the safety of the product.

L-R: Isa Hassan Shallangwa AGM Sales/Marketing & Communications, Dr. Tunde Osoba Chairman AMOHN Lagos State, Dr.Mrs. Ibironke Sodeinde; President Medical Women’s Association of Nigeria MWAN, lagos State representing the First Lady of Lagos State, Her Excellency Dr. Mrs.Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu, Mr. Noriyuki Ogushi; MD Ajinomoto Foods Nigeria Limited, Prof. Abiodun Sanni, Ajinomoto Guest Speaker and Mrs. Francisca Ikediashi, Corporate Communications Manager, Ajinomoto Foods Nigeria Ltd at the event.

According to the company, using AJI-NO-MOTO® MSG will help reduce salt intake in our dishes and better enjoyment of the meals, adding that the Ajinomoto Group is uniquely positioned to contribute to the well-being of all human beings, the society and the planet with “AminoScience”.

Chairman of the Local Organizing Committee of the conference held recently at Radisson Blu, Ikeja, Dr Adeleke Awolesi, said as medical practitioners, they worked with facts and not rumours.

Awolesi said there were no scientifically proven issues about the safety of AJI-NO-MOTO®, stating that consumers should always verify the information they heard about a product, work with facts, and disregard rumours.

The medical expert said: “Most times, most information people peddle are rumours and you know rumours move faster.

“Scientifically, there are no side effects in consuming AJI-NO-MOTO® food seasoning compared to other brands of food seasonings that are used.

“So, scientifically speaking, there are no health issues with the product. We are grateful to the company for partnering with us in our conference and for all the support they gave to us.”

Also backing the safety of the Japanese food seasoning was Vice-President of AMOHN, Lagos State chapter, Dr Osinachi Ubani, who certified the safety of the product by her personal experience and usage.

Ubani noted: “Ajinomoto is an old friend for me. I champion the company coming to this conference because I have worked with them and they have supported me in a lot of health programmes in my local government.

”I use their brand in my house and my children love meals prepared with their product and it is something I have enjoyed. AJI-NO-MOTO® is a brand that I would like to identify with.

“About some things that some people say about the brand, on a personal note, I don’t have issues consuming the food seasoning.

“It is what I use to cook my meals and I have used it for a while without having any health issues and I have not seen any person complaining about health issues after using the brand. So, I do not have any problem using AJI-NO-MOTO®.”

Earlier in his address, Managing Director of Ajinomoto Foods Nigeria Ltd., Mr. Noriyuki Ogushi, assured the medical practitioners of the safety of the product which he said had existed for over a hundred years.

According to him, umami is the taste of the amino acid glutamate – one of the most prevalent amino acids in nature and naturally present in foods like tomatoes, seafood, vegetables, cheese, and breastmilk.

Ogushi noted that various scientific findings had proved over and again that AJI-NO-MOTO® MSG was safe for consumption.

He stated that based on its safety, the product was consumed in over 130 countries, adding that the usage of MSG was to enhance taste and also increase the deliciousness of food.

A professor of Food Microbiology and Biotechnology at the University of Ibadan, Oyo State, Prof. Abiodun Sanni, again debunked the myths and unscientific stories about MSG, reiterating that glutamate had no health issues as purported in some quarters.

“MSG does not cause allergy; it does not cause asthma– no link at all; it does not cause obesity; no adverse effect on the lung. Again, no study has shown any group of people not to take glutamate”, he said.

The theme of the conference was, ‘Overview of National Primary Healthcare Under One Roof Performance: Nigeria’s Journey Towards Universal Health Coverage’.