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General News of Wednesday, 30 September 2009

Source: GNA

Don't use food joints as sleeping places - FDB

Tema, Sept 30, GNA - The Food and Drugs Board (FDB) has appealed to food joint operators to desist from turning their premises into sleeping places at night.

The practice, it said, exposed cooked food, food items and cooking utensils to micro-organisms that could contaminate food sold to consumers.

Miss Maria Lovelace-Johnson, Head of the Food Safety Management Unit at the FDB, said this at a day's food safety awareness programme in Tema. The programme brought together traditional caterers, foodstuff and fruit sellers in Tema Community One and was on the topic "Street Food Safety". The workshop was to educate participants on the basic principles in the selection and buying of foodstuff and the principles to apply when transporting, storing and preserving those items.

Ms Lovelace-Johnson said people who slept in food joints might use the utensils for other purposes such as washing of clothes as well as misplacing food items at unapproved places including the floor. She said caterers must always follow the five keys to safer food that include keeping oneself and premises clean through the washing of hands with soap and water frequently before handling food. Others were separating raw and cooked foods to avoid transferring dangerous micro organisms from raw foods, especially meat, poultry and seafood onto other foods during food preparation and storage. Ms Lovelace-Johnson said her outfit would, after the training, monitor and evaluate the activities of the vendors to ensure compliance with food safety measures and FDB would sanction recalcitrant caterers. 30 Sept 09