The Ghana Standards Authority (GSA) and Nestlé Ghana Ltd, have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to forge a strong cooperation in the sharing of scientific and technical information.
The Public-Private-Partnership (PPP) agreement seeks to enhance laboratory analytical methods alignment and capacity building in laboratory testing of food products to enhance product safety and quality standards.
The partnership would also contribute to the enhancement of technical competencies of GSA personnel and promote best practices.
The Director General of GSA, Prof. Alex Dodoo, told the Graphic Business after the agreement was signed that under the terms of the MoU, the GSA would collaborate with Nestlé in the standardisation and alignment of applicable test methods; carry out inter-laboratory comparisons in agreed scopes and conduct ISO/IEC 17025, safety and compliance internal audits per agreed schedules between the two parties.
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With the partnership in place, Prof. Dodoo said Nestlé would offer GSA the opportunity to tour Nestlé laboratories, share relevant information through capacity-building programmes to assist the GSA and carry out inter-laboratory comparisons in agreed scopes using ISO accredited standards to improve standards in Ghana.
“Basically we are a country that wants to create jobs and develop fast but we can only do that by changing the mindset of the people to adhere to standards because although for years we have worked to protect consumers and facilitate trade, we have not done it optimally because we have not used the opportunities available,” he said.
Laboratory information management systems
He said there would also be knowledge exchange on Laboratory Information Management Systems between the two institutions which “would enhance the use of GSA laboratories for conformance to standards and compliance to set constituent limits per Ghana standards”.
The Managing Director of Nestlé Ghana, Ms Philomena Tan, said the partnership with the GSA would mutually benefit both organisations by harnessing expertise to build individual capabilities to deliver safer and healthier foods to Ghanaians.
“The quality and safety of our food and beverages are non-negotiable priorities for Nestlé,” she said.
She explained that the partnership was a concrete articulation of Nestlé’s commitment to create shared value for society and the company.
“It will further enable us to fulfil our purpose of enhancing the quality of life in the country and contribute to a healthier future in Ghana,” she added.