Barry Callebaut leads farmer engagement at community level for World Food Safety Day
As part of the activities to mark this year’s World Food Safety Day, the world’s leading manufacturer of high-quality chocolate and cocoa products, Barry Callebaut Ghana conveyed the food security message to some key producing communities cocoa in some districts of the Ashanti region.
This decision is part of efforts to ensure that cocoa farmers understand the need to prioritize and include good food safety practices in their work to ensure that the end products of their farms are healthy and product free. chemical.
The farmer engagement was organized in collaboration with Nyonkopa Cocoa Buying Limited, the only purchasing company licensed for Barry Callebaut in Ghana. Officials from the two companies visited about five communities in the Ashanti region, namely Ankaase, Oseikrom in New Edubiase district, Hia (Obuasi) and Marfokrom and Adoowa in Ashanti Bekwai district.
Farmers were guided through activities impacting food safety such as fertilizing, applying pesticides (pest control), handling PPE after applying chemicals, disposing of chemical containers used, product handling with emphasis on the prevention of allergens (cashews and peanuts), carbohydrates, disease, accumulation of aflatoxins, use of prohibited chemicals and pesticide residues in cocoa beans.
A session was also organized to educate them on daily activities at home that may impact food security such as cooking, using clean water, storing detergents, washing hands, among others. other.
In his interaction with farmers, Caleb Agblo, the food safety coordinator at Barry Callebaut advised farmers not to downplay the issue of food and personal hygiene as it has long term effects on the end products: â€œ It is important to ensure personal hygiene as a farmer because you are not only producing for yourselves, but for the whole world. Wash your hands with soap and clean water before and after handling cocoa beans to avoid cross-contamination. Also make sure that foods that may cause allergic reactions such as nuts are not dried next to cocoa beans on the same shelves and make sure your environment is clean. ”
For his part, Ernest Kobil, director of agricultural services at Nyonkopa (Assin Fosu), called on farmers to refrain from using banned and unapproved chemicals to spray their farms, as it had disastrous consequences not only on their health, but also on the safety of their products. as well as.
“ The abuse of chemicals causes the pods to ripen and when harvested they would have turned into black beans which are inevitably rejected on the international market ”
World Food Safety Day falls on June 7, 2021 and aims to attract attention and inspire action to help prevent, detect and manage foodborne risks, thereby contributing to food security, human health and economic prosperity.
The theme of this year’s celebration is â€œHealthy Foods Today, Healthy Futuresâ€.
The call to action for Barry Callebaut this year is to grow it safely – The need for agriculture and food producers to adopt good practices.
Meanwhile, Nyonkopa Cocoa Buying Limited’s Deputy Director of Procurement, David Koomson, challenged farmers to prioritize responsibility and accountability in their operations to ensure they have it for themselves. their money after each farming season.
â€œWe have coaches and clerks on standby to help you with your accounting needs. Use them to track the investments you put into your farms. ”