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General News of Friday, 29 February 2008

Source: GNA

Food safety workshop to be held in March

Accra, Feb. 29, GNA - The final workshop programme which demands compliance with food safety and sustainable environmental practices would be held from March 4-5.

The workshop, which aims at showcasing a participatory approach to smallholder capacity development for compliance to the Ghana GlobalGAP (EurepGap) Option 2 Pilot Programme, is expected to attract 150 participants.

A statement on Friday from the Public Relations Unit of the programme, said the public-private partnership programme involved the Horticultural Export Industry Initiative (HEII) of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MOFA), the Market Oriented Agriculture Programme (MOAP) of the GTZ/DED and US Agency for International Development's Trade and Investment Programme for competitive export economy and six private sector farmer-based organizations (FBOs).

It named these FBOs as the Adonten and Fotobi Co-operative Pineapple Growers and Marketing Societies both in the Akuapem South District, the Gomoa Mafi and Gomoa Okyereko Pineapple Growers Association, in the Gomoa District, the New Generation Pineapple Growers Association in the Dangme West District and PINEX Co-operative Farmers and Marketing Society in the Hohoe District. The statement said the two-year programme, which began in January 2006 as an innovative pilot to adopt the GlobalGAP Option 2 protocol, had supported those six producer FBOs to obtain certification under the standard and the final workshop was to discuss achievements, challenges, lessons learnt and the way forward to ensuring export quality. It said the GlobalGAP was now recognized as the norm for both Ghana's fruit exporters and the horticultural industry as the basic standard requirement to be adopted by smallholder farmers to enable them to join the supply chains of the main exporters. It said the approach also ensured that both levels of production sources were equipped to satisfy international market requirements at all times.

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