Food scientists are urging governments, producers, and consumers to work together more closely to ensure a more resilient food system.
Each year, it is estimated that 2.5 per cent of Ghana’s population suffers from food-borne illness.
According to the Ministry of Food and Agriculture and a World Bank report, this is the case.
A restaurant in Accra was recently closed down after customers became ill from food poisoning after eating there.
This is not an isolated incident; some foods sold on the Ghanaian market are occasionally aflatoxins contaminated, with food sellers frequently unaware of the consequences of unsanitary conditions in which these foods are prepared and served.
Scientists expressed concern about the phenomenon and called for urgent attention from all relevant stakeholders at a conference organized by the Northern regional chapter of the Ghana Science Association on the theme “The Role of Food Safety for Health.”
Professor Francis Zotor, a Public Health Nutritionist and lecturer at the University of Health and Allied Sciences, stated at the conference that “there is a need for Champions in promoting safe food handling through systematic disease prevention and awareness programs using the WHO five keys to safer food message and training materials.”
He also urged strong collaboration among all relevant stakeholders to ensure food safety.
Professor Gideon Helegbe, President of the Northern Branch of the Ghana Science Association (GSA), described the conference as “significant because it provided members with the opportunity to discuss topical issues of national and regional concern and how to bring GSA closer to the general public, in other words, demystify science.”
Some association members also presented their research works for discussion as part of the conference.
The association also discussed grantsmanship in order to provide members with the necessary skills for writing and winning research funding grants.
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