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31.08.2004 General News

Gov't Investigates Palm Oil Contamination

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The Ministry of Trade, Industry and PSI has said export-related regulatory agencies were investigating reports of the contamination of palm oil exports to the UK.

The agencies are the Ghana Export Promotion Council (GEPC), Ghana Standards Board (GSB) and the Ghana Food and Drugs Board (GFDB).

A statement issued by the sector Minister, Alan Kyeremanten, said the ministry had noted with concern a “rapid alert warning report from the UK Foods Standards Agency in respect of palm oil exports from Ghana to the UK suspected to be contaminated by Sudan IV dye which is dangerous to health”.

It continues that, “for avoidance of doubt, the general public is hereby being informed that the palm oil export from Ghana into the UK or any part of the world has not been banned”.

With respect to the production and sale of palm oil on the local market, the statement said the GSB and GFDB were currently conducting investigations to establish whether any palm oil put up for sale on the domestic market had been contaminated.

The statement reminded producers and exporters of oil palm that under Ghana's existing food standards established by the GSB, Sudan IV dye was not a permitted food colour addictive since it represented a serious health hazard if consumed in sufficient quantities.