By Denis Bebane and Edward Agbodzo
The Food and Drugs Authority, FDA has urged the public to be responsible to check expiry dates, labels on products and stamps of the various regulatory bodies on products in order to ensure that the products they buy are safe for human consumption, especially during this yuletide.
Speaking to the media on the sidelines of a Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols organized by the FDA in Wa, the Upper West Regional Head of the Authority, Albert Ankomah, said as the yuletide approaches, the FDA has inspected most of the companies and market places to ensure that products in markets are wholesome for human health.
However some unscrupulous people will still smuggle unwholesome products into the market and warned consumers to be watchful during this Christmas.
He appealed to the public to lodge consumer complaints with regards to such products at any office of the FDA for the necessary action to be taken.
The Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols was to thank God for His grace through a successful year.
The event saw choir groups from the Methodist Church, Seventh Day Adventist (SDA) and the Upper West Regional FDA Choir among others as well as individuals playing various roles to make the occasion a success with renditions and recitations.
The Upper West Regional Head of the FDA, Albert Ankomah pointed out that the office in collaboration with various stakeholders including Custom Division of Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), Ghana Standards Authority, Environmental Health Office, and the Police among others was able to achieve most of its target for the year.
He said the Authority was able to inspect all facilities that were supposed to be inspected for the year 2021. About 12 consumer complaints in Upper West were also investigated to ensure the safety of citizens.
Mr Ankomah advised the public to pay attention to directives on products and foodstuff storage conditions to avoid contamination.
Mr Ankomah stated that per the post market surveillance, data on packaged food for 2020, the office had recorded 20.24 % of expired products from 400 shops inspected.
Meanwhile the percentage still remain same after inspecting over 800 shops this year. The Upper West Regional Head of FDA, Mr Ankomah said plans had been put in place to bring the situation to the barest minimum next year.
He urged consumers who cannot read to seek help from friends and relatives to check any products they buy from the market for them to be sure that it is good for human consumption.