The Director for Legal and Corporate Affairs of the Ghana Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) has cautioned Ghanaians to conduct a thorough check of the registration numbers of the FDA on products before going ahead to purchase the products.

This comes after the FDA debunked claims that sachet water on the market is contaminated with faecal matter.

Speaking to Roselyn Felli on Prime Morning, Joseph Yaw-Bernie Bennie explained that the FDA registration number is labelled on all registered products which consumers can confirm on the FDA website when in doubt.

“If you pick any sachet product or any product that is registered by FDA, the registration number is on the product. There’s supposed to be an expiry date on all sachet water. Currently, they have about three months of shelf life,” he said.

Mr Bennie added that “so when you check the manufacturing date, it is always stated on the sachet that it expires 3 months after the date of production.”

In the past week, a study by the Ghana Statistical Service revealed that most sachet water on the market was contaminated with faecal matter went viral.

The multiple indicator cluster survey conducted in 2017 revealed 34.1% of households in Ghana which relied on sachet water as a drinking water source had an appreciable amount of Esherichia coli, a contamination indicator.  

In a response to media reports on the poor quality and safety of sachet water, the FDA assured of regular inspection of manufacturing facilities premised on the Authority’s guidelines.

The Authority said the outcome of its regular surveillance of sachet water producers is not in conformity with observations by the Ghana Statistical Service.

But they also urged the public to patronize only registered sachet and bottled water manufactured in Ghana.

The public is also admonished to report any unregistered sachet and bottled water at any of its nearest offices across the country.

Meanwhile, Mr Bennie guaranteed Ghanaians the FDA was working to introduce an easy and convenient system to enable purchasers to verify fake products easily.

Meanwhile, the President of the National Association of Sachet/Packaged Water Producers (NASPAWAP), Magnus Nunoo confirmed that the association serves as a check on its members.

“It’s under constant surveillance, and at least if you have a facility licensed, the span is just one year. After one year, you have to go back and ran through the process again. We visit you at least twice within the period to ensure that you’re doing the right thing,” he said.