The Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) says, all registered products under its seal, including tomato mix and tomato pastes are safe for human consumption.
The Authority said it was currently undertaking regulatory measures such as sampling and testing of all batches of the products as prescribed by standards and labelling guidelines.
This was contained in a statement copied to the Ghana News Agency by the FDA and signed by its Acting Head of Communications and Public Education, Mr James Lartey, for the Chief Executive Officer.
The statement said the attention of the FDA was drawn to a documentary circulating on social media on the “Production of Tomato Paste in China,” with the video condemning the production of tomato concentrate mixed with other ingredients found on the Ghanaian market.
“The FDA, however, wishes to inform the general public that, there are two variations of tomato concentrate products: tomato paste and tomato mix.
“According to the Ghana Standards GS 246:2019, tomato paste is tomato concentrate to, which salt and other suitable seasoning ingredients may be added, while tomato mix per the Ghana Standards GS 1203:2018, is tomato concentrate and/or tomato powder (granules) to, which water, salt, starch, dietary fibre and other ingredients mentioned in Clause 5.1.2 are added,” the statement said.
It said, regarding the labeling of the products in Ghana, the FDA had a separate guideline for labelling tomato mix and seasoned tomato mix, which required quantitative declaration in percentages of tomato and of all ingredients mentioned above if used in production of the product.
“The FDA wishes to further state that Gino, a brand mentioned in the documentary, officially ceased the importation of tomato paste onto the Ghanaian market and from November 2018, only imports bulk tomato concentrate for the production of ‘Gino Tomato Mix’ locally,” the statement noted.
The Authority reiterated that the wellbeing of the public was its priority.