A scheme to promote quality system and safety management in the food value chain has been launched in Accra.
Dubbed: ‘Angalia Food Safety Alliance (AFSA) certification Scheme’ seeks to create quality system for safety, fair human treatment of animals and good environmental stewardship.
Speaking at the launch in Accra yesterday, Food Safety and Quality Management Consultant, Emmanuel Paa Nii Quaye, said the scheme was to promote safety of consumers.
He explained that the initiative operated with other food safety management programmes and principles, including Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) to achieve food safety.
Mr Quaye observed that AFSA was a third-party food safety certification scheme based on standards that defined food safety management procedures, prerequisites for food hygiene, handling, storage and transportation operations across the food value chain.
“AFSA certification identifies with food producers, processors and retailers to ensure provision of safer foods for consumers, certification scheme allowed food safety and quality systems to be verified, validated throughout the food value chain by increasing brand protection and consumer confidence and loyalty.
“It is also recognised by food retailers, foodservice providers, consumer and regulatory agencies that require food safety, quality management systems and assurance by their suppliers,” Mr Quaye stressed.
He explained that the initiative outlined new frontiers in food safety by exploring feedback of consumers and scientific knowledge from technical group for food producers, processors and retailers to be able to promote food production industry.
Mr Quaye entreated stakeholders in the industry to sign up to the certification scheme since they stood to gain recognition, wide coverage of acceptability, promotion of confidence in food safety and legality.
“The certification scheme helps to improve process management by helping to pro-actively identify and manage risk so as to avoid stock recoveries, market withdrawals, additional works and to increase yields by reducing materials waste,” he noted.
Mr Quaye indicated that beneficiary institutions stood to gain safety and quality advantages such as food safety requirement, proof of due diligence and compliance with regulatory requirements.
BY BENEDICTA GYIMAAH FOLLEY & CECELIA LAGBA