Hygienic practices among food vendors in educational institutions in Ghana: the case of Konongo
journal contributionposted on 2013-07-09, 00:00 authored by I Monney, Dominic Agyei, W Owusu
With the booming street food industry in the developing world there is an urgent need to ensure food vendors adhere to hygienic practices to protect public health. This study assessed the adherence to food hygiene practices by food vendors in educational institutions in Konongo, Ghana. Structured questionnaires, extensive observation and interviews were used for the study involving 60 food vendors from 20 basic schools. Attributable to the influence of school authorities and the level of in-training of food vendors, the study points out that food vendors in educational institutions generally adhered to good food hygiene practices, namely, regular medical examination (93%), protection of food from flies and dust (55%); proper serving of food (100%); good hand hygiene (63%); and the use of personal protective clothing (52%). The training of food vendors on food hygiene, instead of the level of education had a significant association (p < 0.05) with crucial food hygiene practices such as medical examination, hand hygiene and protection of food from flies and dust. Further, regulatory bodies legally mandated to efficiently monitor the activities of food vendors lacked the adequate capacity to do so. The study proposes that efforts should be geared towards developing training programmes for food vendors as well as capacity building of the stakeholders.