WFP to investigate mouldy rice

KATHMANDU: The United Nations World Food Programme on Friday said it has launched immediate investigation into how 120 bags of rice in Laprak, Gorkha, were damaged and turned out to be mouldy.

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The WFP Emergency Coordinator for Nepal, Richard Ragan, and Chief District Officer of Gorkha Uddhav Prasad Timilsina, today visited Laprak, following complaints that some of the rice meant to be distributed among earthquake survivors was damaged.

According to a press release issued by the WFP, Ragan and Timilsina saw that 120 bags of rice, out of a total 485 bags that had been delivered to Laprak on Tuesday, contained damaged rice.

The 120 bags were set aside by WFP’s local partner Nepal Red Cross Society (NRCS) before distribution, while the remaining 365 bags of undamaged rice had been distributed to the villagers.

“We have launched immediate investigation into why a quarter of the rice was unfit for distribution,” said Ragan. “There are three possibilities: the rice could have been received damaged from the supplier, the damage could have happened during warehousing in high temperatures, or, finally, during transportation. The answer will be made public as soon as we find out what happened. It is also important to note that none of the damaged rice was distributed and will be immediately replaced,” he said.

WFP takes the quality of the food it distributes very seriously, and thoroughly investigates any complaints, it read.