The World Food Programme (WFP) and Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) towards ensuring food safety and quality in Ghana.
The MoU will help assist in providing oversight on the safety and quality management, post-production and market surveillance of targeted agro-food processing companies in Ghana under the Enhanced Nutrition and Value Added Chain (ENVAC).
The WFP has hence donated a cross country vehicle to the FDA to assist in ensuring the successful execution of the project which covers activities from factories to retail points as well as selected community level agro-food processors to support nutritional value chain development within the regulatory framework of Ghana.
A statement copied to the Ghana News Agency at the weekend said the objectives of the partnership include assessing the level of compliance of 38 food retail facilities and 3 Industrial processors to FDA processing requirements by December 2019.
It said the partnership would help in understanding food safety and quality issues faced by processing facilities in the 3 project regions.
The statement added that the partnership would also go into sampling and analysing products sold by 38 retail facilities to understand the level of food safety risks in the consumption of cereal blends in the project regions.
“As a regulatory body mandated by the Public Health Act 2012 (Act 851) to regulate food, drugs, medical devices, household chemicals, tobacco and tobacco products, the FDA would inspect the 38 retail facilities and 3 industrial processes to assess the level of compliance to Good Warehouse Practices, sampling and laboratory analysis of products across the 38 retail facilities,” the statement added.
It added that the activities to be undertaken under the partnership would enable the FDA and WFP gain better knowledge of what pertain with respect to safety and quality practices amongst retailers of fortified blended flours used in WFP nutrition programmes.
It said: “To better monitor the quality management practices implemented by the three industrial processors of the fortified blended flours and lipid-based nutritional supplements, appropriate training programmes will be organised to improve food safety and quality practices among retailers of fortified blended flours.”
Ms Rukia Yacoub, the WFP Country Director commended the FDA and assured the CEO that the partnership was just the beginning of a long relationship with the FDA adding that the WFP will collaborate with the FDA to ensure public health and safety.
Mrs Delese Darko, the Chief Executive Officer of the FDA assured the Country Director of WFP that the Authority will work assiduously to ensure the success of the ENVAC project and looks forward to more collaboration with the WFP to ensure public health and safety.