Information available to suggests that traders at five markets in Accra are selling food items of low quality to consumers. 

This was contained in the findings of a research conducted at the selected markets, which are very popular in Ghana. 

The markets are located at Agbogbloshie, Dome, Kaneshie, Makola and Okaishie, all of which are in Accra. 

The research revealed that food sold in these markets are generally of very poor nutritional quality, according to Dr Mavis Owureku-Asare, a food safety consultant. 

Dr Owureku-Asare examined tomatoes, oranges, pineapples, garden eggs, cocoyam leaves (Kontomire), as well as proteins such as shrimps and fish powder as sold at markets. 

According to a Myjoyonline report, she added that markets have an impact on foods because of the effects of handling, storage and display of these foods. 

For instance with oranges, she said, the open display of the fruit in the sun and on the floor, considerably affects the Vitamin C content. 

“Vitamin C quickly breaks down in the heat and evaporates easily out of the fruit. What is orange without Vitamin C,” she quizzed.

Dr. Owureku-Asare added that cancer-fighting substances like lycopene and other antioxidants in tomatoes are easily being destroyed at these markets, a measure of market conditions across the country.

She also observed that significant amounts of pesticide residue in some foods like cabbage, lettuce, okro, “kontomire”, maize and beans from misapplication of pesticides have significant health implications. 

Groundnut paste is mixed with powder made from dried cassava (Konkonte) while more than 98% of palm oil is adulterated with cancer-causing agents, her research revealed. 

Shrimp, as well as fish powder, was also found to have been mixed with sawdust, describing the practice as food fraud.