The Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) has advised the public to desist from buying food from chop bars, restaurants and vendors without a “Food Hygiene Permit”.
The Authority said individuals must demand the permit from where they buy their food so they will be on the safer side.
The FDA indicated that some food joints are operating without the permit, a situation it said was dangerous and a threat to public health.
Mrs. Rhoda Ewurabena Appiah, Head of Communication and Public Education, told Nyankonton Mu Nsem on Rainbow Radio 87.5Fm that some of these food joints operate under unhygienic conditions with rodents-infested kitchens among others.
It is,, for this reason, she asked the public to ensure that where they buy their food is operating with the permit.
She emphasised the importance for food vendors nationwide to obtain a permit from the Authority to legalise their operations or face legal action – a jail term, fine, or both.
The permit requires the Authority to inspect the vendor’s work environment to determine its hygienic nature, the personal hygiene displayed by workers around food, and the condition of groceries used to cook and sell to customers.
Section 130 (1) of the Public Health Act 2012 (Act 851) states that: “A person shall not manufacture for sale, sell, supply or store products regulated under this part except in premises registered for the purpose under this part.”
According to her, the FDA will this year introduce star ratings for good vendors as part of the process to ensure the sale of hygienic food.
”The FDA will introduce star ratings this year. The competition in street food vending would be interesting. We will not only compete on just the taste nut how hygienic your food is. If you sell near a gutter, nobody would patronize your food when others had applied for certification from the FDA.”