Street foods in Accra, Ghana: How safe are they?

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dc.contributor.author Mensah, P.
dc.contributor.author Yeboah-Manu, D.
dc.contributor.author Owusu-Darko, K.
dc.contributor.author Ablordey, A.
dc.date.accessioned 2013-06-17T08:34:30Z
dc.date.accessioned 2017-10-16T13:04:57Z
dc.date.available 2013-06-17T08:34:30Z
dc.date.available 2017-10-16T13:04:57Z
dc.date.issued 2002
dc.identifier.citation Mensah, P., Yeboah-Manu, D., Owusu-Darko, K., & Ablordey, A. (2002). Street foods in Accra, Ghana: How safe are they? Bulletin of the World Health Organization, 80(7), 546-554. en_US
dc.identifier.uri http://197.255.68.203/handle/123456789/3244
dc.description.abstract Objective To investigate the microbial quality of foods sold on streets of Accra and factors predisposing to their contamination. Methods Structured questionnaires were used to collect data from 117 street vendors on their vital statistics, personal hygiene, food hygiene and knowledge of foodborne illness. Standard methods were used for the enumeration, isolation, and identification of bacteria. Findings Most vendors were educated and exhibited good hygiene behaviour. Diarrhoea was defined as the passage of53 stools per day) by 110 vendors (94.0%), but none associated diarrhoea with bloody stools; only 21 (17.9%) associated diarrhoea with germs. The surroundings of the vending sites were clean, but four sites (3.4%) were classified as very dirty. The cooking of food well in advance of consumption, exposure of food to flies, and working with food at ground level and by hand were likely risk factors for contamination. Examinations were made of 511 menu items, classified as breakfast/snack foods, main dishes, soups and sauces, and cold dishes. Mesophilic bacteria were detected in 356 foods (69.7%): 28 contained Bacillus cereus (5.5%), 163 contained Staphylococcus aureus (31.9%) and 172 contained Enterobacteriaceae (33.7%). The microbial quality of most of the foods was within the acceptable limits but samples of salads, macaroni, fufu, omo tuo and red pepper had unacceptable levels of contamination. Shigella sonnei and enteroaggregative Escherichia coli were isolated from macaroni, rice, and tomato stew, and Salmonella arizonae from light soup. Conclusion Street foods can be sources of enteropathogens. Vendors should therefore receive education in food hygiene. Special attention should be given to the causes of diarrhoea, the transmission of diarrhoeal pathogens, the handling of equipment and cooked food, hand-washing practices and environmental hygiene en_US
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.publisher Bulletin of the World Health Organization en_US
dc.subject Food services en_US
dc.subject Food contamination en_US
dc.subject Food handling en_US
dc.subject Food microbiology en_US
dc.subject Diarrhea/etiology en_US
dc.subject Risk factors en_US
dc.subject Ghana en_US
dc.title Street foods in Accra, Ghana: How safe are they? en_US
dc.type Article en_US


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  • Nutrition Department [41]
    The overall goal of the department is to conduct research and provide solutions to nutritional problems in Ghana. In pursuance of this goal, the Nutrition Department since its inception has focused its research in the areas of maternal, infant and young child nutrition, food consumption and food security and micronutrient deficiency and interventions. These are priority food and nutrition problems in Ghana.

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