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Business News of Thursday, 15 April 2021

Source: business24.com.gh

AGI launches Obaasima initiative under food fortification project

The Obaasima project, has offered food safety training to selected SMEs The Obaasima project, has offered food safety training to selected SMEs

The Association of Ghana Industries (AGI) has launched fortified foods produced under the Obaasima food fortification project, a market-based approach which addresses micronutrient deficiencies by creating demand for fortified packaged foods.

Obaasima is the first front-of-pack (FOP) seal that differentiates fortified nutritious foods from the rest in the market.

Speaking at the launch of the fortified foods, Vice President of AGI, Humphery Ayim-Darke said, “the Obaasima seal guarantees that food products carrying the seal fulfill certain nutrition criteria, including a minimum content of minerals and vitamins and maximum permissible levels of sugar and salt.”

“Till date, five companies have met the projects’ criteria and have had their products confirmed as suitable to be fortified with 18 vitamins and minerals,” Mr. Ayim-Darke said.

The five companies whose products have been fortified and currently sold on the market are Tom Vita X and Tom Vita Regular from Yedent Agro Food Industries Limited. Gari mix from Oxy Industries Limited, Lola biscuits from Mass Industries Limited, Dunu Tom brown from Praise Exports and Lovit cereal from Premium foods Limited.

He noted that these products have gone through all the processes necessary for registration at the FDA and the Obaasima secretariat.

The Vice President noted that the entire project is focused on strengthening the local structures that will successfully carry OBAASIMA into the future for the nutritional and health benefit of Ghanaians.

In Ghana, the progress towards achieving key global nutrition targets such as overweight and obesity among women, and anemia in women of reproductive age have shown varying degrees of success.

These health challenges among women and children are largely attributed to micronutrient malnutrition. A multi-stakeholder approach is imperative to tackling this prevailing challenge and attaining the SDG target.

The Obaasima project, has offered food safety training to selected SMEs in the three Obaasima test markets, which are Ashanti, Western and Greater Accra regions. Also, 115 food and beverage businesses have benefitted from these training programmes over the last three years.

The voluntary seal is jointly owned and steered by the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI) and the Ghana Standards Authority (GSA) and is anchored on the key donor partnerships from BMZ/GIZ, DSM, Sight and Life Foundation and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

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