Palm Oil: FDA Assures Public Of Safety

The Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) has assured the public that it has instituted regulatory measures to ensure the safety of palm oil on the market as well as export consignments for consumption.

A statement signed by Mrs Delese A.A Darko, the Ag. Chief Executive Officer of the FDA, and copied to the Ghana News Agency, said the attention of the Authority had been drawn to news making rounds on social media about a seizure of two brands of palm oil (POLIFUDS and ZOMI) in Switzerland purported to contain Sudan dyes.

The statement said the publication attributed its source to the Swiss Federal Food Safety and Veterinary Office (FSVO) and warned against the use of the said palm oil brands.

It may be recalled that the FDA has worked extensively on this subject in the past, in collaboration with other agencies including its European partners, to ensure the safety of palm oil used in Ghana and for export.

The statement said Preliminary investigations conducted so far by the FDA about the publication indicated that the implicated brands were not registered with the FDA and there was no information regarding the country of origin.

"Market surveillance carried out so far by the FDA has also not established that the said brands are in circulation on the Ghanaian market.

"It must be noted that ZOMI is a generic name for a type of palm oil in many West African countries and its origin should not be necessarily associated with Ghana only.

"The export control measures include the sampling and testing of consignments for Sudan IV dyes among other parameters,” it said.

The statement said failed consignments were disposed of and that the FDA would continue to monitor the industry and trade practices to promote public health and safety.

"Meanwhile, the public is encouraged to alert the FDA on any issue regarding its mandate through any of the following contacts - Toll free: 0800151000 (Vodafone and Airtel), Hotlines: 0299802932, 0299802933, and Short code: 4015," it said.