The conventional ways of handling eggs, including the sale of broken eggs for consumption, have been identified as posing public health risk.
According to the Ghana Standards Authority and the Ghana National Eggs Campaign Secretariat, the way eggs are handled on the markets is below standard.
Representatives of the two organisations said this at a workshop held in Kumasi on Thursday.
Players in the egg production and marketing industry are, therefore, entreated to comply with the standards to ease export of the commodity to neighboring countries.
The two-day workshop was attended by over 150 poultry farmers and egg vendors in the Ashanti Region. The workshop, organised by the Ghana National Eggs Campaign Secretariat in collaboration with the Ghana Standards Authority,educated participants on international standards of handling eggs.
Speaking on the general requirement of eggs, Samuel Kwatia of the Ghana Standards Authority, indicated that vendors and buyers must assess the weight, colour and neatness of eggs.
“You don’t produce the eggs but you have control over the final product. Some characteristics you have to check out include discoloration, brokenness, etc. Whenever you buy an egg, we advise that the crates should not be returned to the farmer. This helps to reduce the microbial circulation in the egg industry,” he said.
Coordinator of the Ghana National Eggs Campaign Secretariat, Comfort Acheampong, indicated that standardization of eggs would allow for exports to regional and international markets.
“This would help our farmers get certification to sell across borders if they go by the standards. The standard would help egg hawkers to sell world class consumable eggs,” she said.
National Chairman of the Ghana Poultry Farmers Association, Victor Oppong Agyei, reiterated the need for farmers to better handle eggs to avoid losses.
“If the eggs are dirty, the prices will come down. Farmers have to at least manage it in such that, the eggs are always clean before they come to the market. We have to ensure that the broken ones are taken out of the eggs otherwise they will destroy the whole egg.
Nutritionist with the Ghana Health Service, Mirabel Asomboya, allayed fears associated with egg consumption and revealed some of its benefits.
“Eggs are superfoods. They contain over 40 nutrients including antioxidants to support growth and development and promote good health. Everyone can take eggs,” she said.