GHANA – The Food and Drugs Authority Ghana (FDA Ghana) has notified all operators of food service establishments that it is illegal to operate without a valid Food Hygiene Permit.
Section 130 (1) of the Public Health Act 2012, (Act 851), states that, “A person shall not manufacture for sale, sell, supply or store products regulated under this part except in premises registered for that purpose under this part.”
Therefore, all food service establishments are required to regularize their activities by making their facilities available to the FDA for the inspections and facility licensing process that will enable them to acquire valid Food Hygiene Permits.
For the already registered facilities, the FDA requires them to display their certificates where it can easily be spotted.
Operators are to note that the FDA will not hesitate to impose regulatory sanctions against establishments that fail to comply with this directive.
“The general public is hereby admonished to be on the lookout for Food Hygiene Permits in these establishments before patronizing their services in order to safeguard their own health and safety,” said FDA Ghana in a public notice.
In November 2021, the FDA in partnership with the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), Ghana, and the Korley Klottey Municipal Assembly (KOKMA), launched the Street Food Vending Permit, to promote good hygienic practices among vendors.
Prerequisites to acquire permit
Prior to being issued with a permit, the food operator needs to fill out an application form which is purchased at a cost and pay the processing fees.
The FDA will dispatch an inspector, i.e., health officer to the facility premises for inspection to determine if Food Safety Management System (FSMS) i.e. good processing, storage, distribution, quality control/assurance, safe and clean methods are in practice.
A copy of the report finding will be given to the applicant and if any modification or upgrading is required, Corrective Action and Preventive Action Report (CAPA) report will be issued and the applicant will be required to rectify the problem.
Upon successful implementation of the CAPA, a follow-up inspection may be conducted by the inspection team to ascertain the effectiveness of the implementation where applicable.
If the authorized official is satisfied that all the conditions have been met as required for the application, the applicant will be notified of the outcome and issued with the Food Hygiene Permit.
The Food Hygiene Permit is valid for a period of one year and should be renewed. An application for renewal should be submitted to the FDA a month prior to expiry.