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Inappropriate Farming Practices Leading Cause of Food Contamination

Chief Executive Officer of the Gladfin Health Care at Spintex Basket, Dr. Vincent Fianko has expressed concern about the unhealthy manner in which farmers handle their farm produce, particularly, vegetables.

According to Dr. Fianko who spoke during the Food Safety, Nutrition and Hygiene segment of the Rite Morning Ride, Ghanaian farmers failed to give the necessary attention of ‘Raw Foods’ due to the fast, excess money and income that they long for.

He chided farmers for resorting to the use of filthy water in watering their crops, a practice which is improper as most vegetables are eaten without boiling.

“Farmers use ‘any kind of water’ in watering the vegetables and since vegetables are eaten in the raw state, it is necessary to use clean water so that such produce can be plucked and eaten without any side effects,” he admonished.

But Dr. Fianko believes more should be done by consumers to safeguard their own safety in the consumption of vegetables.

“Vegetables are eaten raw and thus need to be well washed with salty water before eaten,” he said. “Washing of hands after visiting the toilet before eating vegetables is also important because even if the produce is not contaminated, eating with unclean hands could lead to its contamination.”

Taking in spoilt food or unheated food from the refrigerator, as indicated by the Chief Executive Officer of the Gladfin Health Care, is equally harmful due to the presence of micro-organisms in the food.

Meanwhile, other means of food contamination could leave vegetables equally unsafe. As Dr. Fianko explained, mishandling of food and poor sanitation practices by vendors could also leave vegetables unclean.

“Saliva and sweat can cause food contamination especially at the shop bars where the workers contaminate the food with sweat and saliva,” he said.

Dr. Fianko therefore admonished patrons of food joints and eateries to be conscious of their health by being wary of the sanitation conditions at such eateries and the appearance of workers before eating from such places.

He also called on the general public to thoroughly wash ‘raw foods’ before consumption as well as ensuring that all food are properly heated before eating to avoid taking in micro-organisms into their system.

Source: Priscilla Agyekum/ritefmonline.org

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