The Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) has cautioned the public to rigorously examine products being sold at ridiculously low prices before buying them.
Buyers must check expiry dates and quality standards in order not to compromise their health and safety.
Mr. John Odai-Tettey, Central Regional Director of the Authority, gave the advice in an interview with the Ghana News Agency in Cape Coast, said it was not enough to only check the expiry dates of products.
“The storage conditions of products, packaging among others must all be ascertained before buying,” he further cautioned.
Consumers were also encouraged to stay away from products displayed directly under the sun especially oil and canned products and report any unregistered and suspected fake product to the Authority.
Mr. Odai-Tettey told sellers to keep their products at required temperatures, observe proper storage systems and willingly hand over their expired products to the Authority for safe disposals.
Catering service providers were also encouraged to apply for Food Hygiene Permit from the Authority and observe good hygienic, storage and distribution practices.
He announced that the Authority had activated a system which would help collect unused medicines for disposal and to effectively discourage self-medication.
“The move dubbed: “Take back unwanted medicines Project”, seeks to retrieve all “medicines illicitly disposed which persist in the environment and decompose into harmful chemicals that contaminate the environment. Consumers are to bring all unused medicines to the Authority or selected pharmacies for their safe disposal,” Mr Odai-Tettey said.
He cautioned against buying medicine especially from uncertified places, stores, shops, drug peddlers, urging the public to rather buy from accredited designated pharmacies or dispensaries.
“We encourage all not to buy drugs from bus stations, vehicles, market traders and drug peddlers,” and added that their surveillance team were going round to crack the whip on such people.
“Taking medicines without recommendations by a health personnel could pose serious threats to the human body especially when they are not taken for its intended purpose,” he indicated.
The FDA Regional Director stated that persons who fell foul to the law stood the chance of loosing their entire products or be charged the minimum administration fine of GH¢25,000.00 or be imprisoned, he warned.
Mr Odai-Tettey, thanked the staff of the Authority for their hard work and dedication during the year despite the challenges that the novel Covid-19 pandemic unleashed worldwide and prayed for a better 2021.
Earlier, The Central Regional Office of the Authority, organized a festival of nine lessons and carols to commemorate the birth of Jesus Christ with melodious carols by the Blessed Choir of the Regional FDA.