Campaign launched to promote soya consumption
The American Soybean Association (ASA), in partnership with World Initiative for Soy in Human Health (WISHH), has launched a campaign to increase awareness of the nutritional benefit of soya consumption in Ghana.
Dubbed “Go For Soya Chunks”, the campaign aims at promoting local consumption and everyday use of soya chunks as a source of quality protein.
Speaking at the launch of the campaign last Friday in Accra, the Country Representative for ASA and WISHH, Mr Chris Slemp, said the initiative would provide consumers with high quality protein to improve the diets of people across the country.
“Currently, global efforts are on track to meet the United Nations Sustainable Goals (UN SDGs), including SDG 2: End hunger, Achieve Food Security and Improved Nutrition and Promote Sustainable Agriculture.
To address the challenge of Food Security and Nutrition in the world, it is important to accelerate the production of healthy, protein-rich foods; this presents another clear opportunity for soya,” he said.
He added that soya could help the Ghana School Feeding Programme (GSFP) meet their goals by increasing protein intake for children at affordable cost.
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“Go For Soya Chunks” campaign
The campaign, which will run from July to December 2021, will include activities with stakeholders from the GSFP, National Association of Domestic Bursars and Matrons (NADBAM) and members of the public.
A “Soya food festival” will also be organised in October to showcase various local meals prepared with soya food ingredients.
Benefits of Soya Chunks in GSFP
The Programme Officer of Agriculture for the GSFP, Mr Seth Offei, in his presentation said soya chunks (TSP) were cheaper as compared to other protein source such as egg, fish and chicken.
He added that the introduction of TSP to matrons would help in preparing nutritious meals for pupils at less cost while maintaining the quality of food served.
“Besides, TSP production is in line with the GSFP local content policy-boosting domestic production.
“TSP is cholesterol free since the soya has been completely defatted. It doubles up in size and volume when it is rehydrated,” he said.
The National Coordinator of the GSFP, Dr Gertrude Quashigah, explained that food safety, quality and hygiene was a challenge when she assumed her position.
She said value was placed on expanding enrolment, yet the nutritional component of food served pupils was inadequate according to evaluations done by GoG, World Food Programme (WFP) and Partnership for Child Development (PCD) in 2017.
She said the GSFP was satisfied with incorporating soya chunks in meals for pupils for its nutritional potency, relatively cheap cost, ease of usage and ease of storage.
“So far we have not received any complaints of allergy by caterers and school authorities. Caterers have been calling our offices for supply of soya chunks ever since they were introduced to it and I want to use this opportunity to appeal to Yendent Afro-processing Company Limited to establish distribution points across the regions and districts so our caterers can have unlimited access,” Dr Quashigah said.