The Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) has engaged market women in Kumasi in an open forum on the need to practice proper food safety.
The forum forms parts of a series of activities to mark the World Food Safety Day which is celebrated on June 7 every year.
Earlier on, the market women and staff from the FDA joined the food safety awareness creation float through some selected streets of Kumasi.
The forum tends to raise awareness and encourage actions to prevent, detect, and manage foodborne risks amongst market women.
This year’s theme is: ” Food Standards Saves Lives.”
The focus of the celebration was to remind participants of the critical role that food safety plays in our daily lives.
Addressing the gathering, Mr Roderick Daddey-Adjei, Deputy Chief Executive Officer for FDA stressed the need to resonate deeply on a collective mission to ensure the well-being and health of every individual.
He noted that various aspects such as food security, human health, agriculture, and sustainable development enhanced the global organisation’s endeavours in ensuring the safety of the food and therefore should be adhered to.
Mr Daddey-Adjei said, food standards encompassed a wide range of aspects from hygiene to the rigorous testing of ingredients and therefore encouraged promoting food safety as a priority in public discussions, and thus reducing the global burden of foodborne diseases.
He said foodborne illnesses are typically caused by infectious or toxic agents that are often invisible to the naked eye.
He added that the illnesses resulted from the entry of bacteria, viruses, parasites, or chemical substances into the body through contaminated food or water thereby causing harm to individuals.
He explained that, maintaining food safety was crucial throughout the entire food chain, which ranged from production and harvesting to processing, storage, distribution, and ultimately, preparation and consumption and therefore called on the citizenry to give it much attention.
He noted that, as custodians of the public health it was incumbent on them to ensure that every morsel that reached the plate was safe.
He advised the participants to join efforts of the government regulatory agencies in order to achieve real and lasting solutions to food safety issues.
Nana Afia Kyeiwaa, the Queen mother for the Racecourse Market Women Association lamented the poor state of the market and called on government authorities to act swiftly to ensure the standards of food safety was followed.
She said, the nature of the market did not encourage the women to be hygienic while selling, and this should send signals to authority to pay attention to. Nana Kyeiwaa indicated that most market women at Racecourse go about their business in a muddy environment and called on the government to give it a facelift.
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