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05.08.2005 General News

Exhibition to promote local cuisines launched

Accra, August 5, GNA - An exhibition dubbed: "Eat Ghana, Drink Ghana and Live healthy" aimed at promoting locally prepared cuisines and beverages was on Friday launched in Accra by Mr Kwadwo Affram Asiedu, Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry. The three-day Food Fair organized by the Ghana Tourism Federation (GHATOF) is scheduled for September 23- 25, 2005 at the Ghana International Trade Fair Centre. The fair will showcase various local dishes from the 10 regions as well as raise the levels of service quality to the consumer. Mr Asiedu urged Ghanaians to patronize the traditional foods saying government alone could not shoulder the huge undertakings in the tourism sector and welcomed public and private sector collaboration. He said the government believed in the effectiveness and efficiency of the private sector. Mr Asiedu said the demand for prepared consumer-ready foods had been experiencing strong growth and all indicators suggested that the trend would continue but being a little bit more patriotic in "eating and drinking" what Ghana produced would be the surest way to reverse the trend. He said patronizing local food products would not only create sustainable employment for the people but also help local industries to operate more profitably. "If as Ghanaians we enthusiastically patronize our local foods and drinks, we will create the environment for tourists visiting Ghana to do likewise and our tourism service infrastructure will grow" he added. Mr Daniel Dugan, Deputy Minister of Fisheries commended GHATOF for the initiative and called for the needed support to assist the Association to create awareness and encourage Ghanaians and visitors to the country to patronize the locally prepared foods and drinks. " In promoting our local diets, we can encourage our millions of compatriots overseas to go an extra mile to promote our dishes overseas. The Chinese and Indians have their restaurants all over the world serving their cuisine and making it big", he said. He said Ghanaian food and drink products were affordable and provided comfort for domestic and home keeping budget, adding that they had a positive impact on the economy Mr Foster Nyarko, President of GHATOF said traditional foods and beverages were part of the culture of many people and had now become a determinant for tourist's destination of a country. He said traditional food and beverage might be complementary and used as appealing eye-catchers in brochures, videos and television programmes.