The Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA) has begun a nationwide training and sensitization programme for informal food and beverage sector.
The programme which began today at the Accra Technical University brought together food vendors from within and around the Central Business District of the capital city to discuss issues of food hygiene and proper ways of handling food and beverage for mass consumption.
Facilitators took the participants through topics such as, Food Safety and Hygiene, Food and Beverage Services with officials of GTA also sensitizing them on the 1% Tourism Levy which is required to be paid by entities within the tourism and hospitality industry. The vendors were also introduced to basic Finance and Accounting (Bookkeeping) in order for them to cultivate record keeping habits.
Speaking to the media, Deputy CEO of GTA in Charge of Operations, Ekow Sampson averred that a larger portion of labour within the tourism and hospitality space is in the informal sector, hence the rationale behind the organization of the event.
According to him, with 2019 as the Year of Return especially, it was very imperative that food and beverage vendors were trained to apply best and healthy practices as they serve the consuming public who may be coming from all over the world.
“Research shows that unhygienic food contributes about 59.8% to food-borne diseases such as cholera and about 16.9% also comes from food poisoning, so we needed to address that. Secondly, there is also issue of quality service delivery, it is happening throughout all the tourism sectors, especially within the informal sector. So we want to get them to know the essence of providing good service delivery,” he stressed.
The training and sensitization programme continues to Tema in the coming days and will be held across the country until 24th September, 2019 when it ends.
By: Samuel Obeng Appah