Prioritizing Health: Observing World Food Safety Month in Ghana
The adage “we are what we eat” holds true, emphasizing the profound impact that our food choices have on our overall health. The quality of our health is intricately linked to the quality of the food we consume. This highlights the importance of being mindful about our diet to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Recognizing the significance of food safety, the month of June has been designated as World Food Safety Month. Ghana, as a nation, has also dedicated this month to raising awareness and sensitizing the public about the importance of food safety.
Food is a fundamental necessity for human development; it is indispensable for survival. Consequently, ensuring food safety is crucial for safeguarding human health. Proper handling, preparation, and storage of food play a vital role in preventing foodborne illnesses and maintaining a healthy population.
Food safety is a collective responsibility as it can pose global threats and become a public health concern if mishandled. Consequently, it is imperative for individuals to be cautious about their food choices in order to preserve their well-being.
In the pursuit of quality rather than quantity, the focus should shift beyond food security and mass production to actively work towards ensuring the safety and quality of food and feed. This applies to both humans and animals, whether aquatic or terrestrial, as they rely on food for sustenance.
As part of the World Food Safety Month celebrations, the technical working group of the Intersectoral Food Safety Coordinating Committee, comprised of representatives from various government agencies and stakeholders in the food value chain, has officially launched the 2023 World Food Safety Month Celebration. The theme for this year’s celebration is “Food Standards, Save Lives.” The festivities commenced on June 1st with the official launch and a press briefing. On June 7th, 2023, an open forum conference and trade fair will be held nationwide.
The celebrations will encompass a range of activities, including awareness campaigns through social media, radio, and television interviews. Second cycle schools in the Central region will participate in a food safety quiz, while school children will receive education on food safety issues. A grand market durbar, along with processions through towns, will raise awareness about food hygiene. Other events include talks and public education centered around the 2023 theme, stakeholder engagement on food standards and regulations, ensuring food safety, and a competition on food safety awareness, culminating in a panel discussion on food safety by future professionals at KNUST (Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology) to conclude the World Food Safety Month celebration.