Labelling Standards: Products Need to Be Checked at Borders – GSA
The Ghana Standard Authority (GSA) and the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) have embarked on an exercise to close down supermarkets and shops that fail to comply with its general labelling rules.
Speaking on the Citi Breakfast Show the Director of Communications at the Ghana Standard Authority, Dr Kofi Amponsah Bediako, however, admitted that the country needs to do more to stop such products from entering the country’s markets.
“The Ghana Standards Authority and the Food and Drugs Authority and the Food and Drug’s Authority are doing very well. [But] what happens is that, apart from these two agencies, we have other agencies operating at the port, our official point of entry. Therefore, if a directive is given that a particular product should not be allowed to come or enter the country and somehow, they can enter the country, then it becomes challenging. Who do you ask?”
“Apart from the FDA, apart from the GSA, who and who allow these products to come in? So that is what we are discussing now. Trying to put our hands together and make sure that as much as possible, we come out at the highest level to ensure that, effectively, we can eradicate this problem from our society.”
Dr Bediako also noted porous border saying, “between Ghana and Togo for example, there are places that are no man’s land, and you can enter in the night and push it to the Ghana side of the border, and that is what is also creating the problem. So smuggling through unapproved routes is also a major problem.”
He, further, recalled an instance in the Volta Region where “cars were being pushed through rivers to the Ghana side of the border.”
It is for this reason that he said the country needed “to sit down as a state to examine the entirety of our borders to make sure that 24/7, we have people around to check these things.”
In the meantime, Dr Bediako said the GSA had a group monitoring the products on the market.
“Already, they [FDA] have sent men on the ground going around, and I am sure very soon, we will hear them closing some of the shops today… for us at the Standards Authority, we also have a surveillance team that is also going round to examine non-food products. By the close of this week, you will hear of some shops that have been closed down depending it will be done by the Food and Drugs Authority or the Ghana Standards Authority.”