The Brong Ahafo Regional office of the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) has destroyed unwholesome food and consumable items estimated at GH¢45,912 in Sunyani. They included food items, drugs, herbal products, cosmetics, household chemicals and medical devices.
The goods were confiscated by the authority during a routine inspection exercise organised between June and December last year.
Drug items confiscated cost GH¢29, 899. Food products amounted to GH¢14,405.9, while cosmetics, medical devices and household chemicals stood at GH¢1,607.6.
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The Brong Ahafo Regional Head of the FDA, Mr Matthew Gyang Nkum, who made this known to the Daily Graphic, urged the public to be alert when shopping, especially during festive occasions.
He urged the public to check the expiry dates, the storage and handling conditions, FDA registration number and the integrity of products before buying them.
Mr Nkum also advised shop owners to be careful when dealing with private distributors, explaining that some of them mixed expired products with their supplies and that was difficult to detect.
He asked the shop owners to regularly clean their shops and products, stressing that was very important, particularly during the harmattan season, to rid them of dust.
Mr Nkum also advised against cooking in shops as the heat generated increased the temperature in the shops, which in turn reduced the shelf life of products.
He stressed that the consumption or use of unwholesome products, such as those expired, improperly stored, substandard, fake and adulterated may be injurious to health.
For example, he said applying an expired or adulterated cosmetic product, such as a skin lightening cream, might increase the risk of one suffering from skin burns or cancer, while the consumption of contaminated or expired milk products could lead to diarrhoea, headache and stomach cramps.
On labelling, Mr Nkum explained that products were improperly labelled if they did not provide information such as the product’s active ingredients and their quantities, direction for use, storage or handling conditions, warning or precautionary measures.
He commended the police and other institutions for helping to make the exercise successful.
He also commended the affected shop owners for allowing the authority to carry out its duties and impressed on them to continue to partner the FDA to flush out unwholesome goods from the market.