15.03.2005 General News

FDB to check safety standards of imported products

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Tema, March 15, GNA- The Food and Drugs Board (FDB), is to embark on foreign trips to learn at first hand about the conditions under which food items imported to Ghana are produced.

Mr Kofi Essel, Head of Food, Safety and Management of the FDB said the novelty was to ensure that imported food products were safe for human consumption.

He made this known when he addressed the Tema branch of the Ghana Institute of Freight Forwarders (GIFF) at a day's workshop aimed at educating the members on the prerequisite requirements for the importation of pre-packaged foods.

Mr Essel said the FDB had intensified its site verification visits to make sure that goods were kept in good conditions at warehouses. He asked the freight forwarders to impress on importers to provide adequate information on products, stating the correct origin of production, labels and other requirements to prevent confiscation. Mr Essel expressed the need for the FDB to be given a month's notice about the importation of any product.

To streamline the duplication of functions between the FDB and the Ghana Standards Board, the Head of Safety said a proposed bill was underway to harmonise the laws and regulations establishing the two institutions.

Mr Roderick Daddey-Adjei, Senior Regulator Officer of the FDB said it was wrong for the media and corporate bodies to advertise products that have not been certified by the Board and asked them to stop the practice.

Mr Carlos Ahenkorah, Chairman of GIFF expressed concern about the cumbersome clearance procedure at the country's ports, which delayed the turn around time and prayed that it should be streamlined.

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