The Ghana Tourism Authority under the auspices of the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture (MOTAC) has organised a training and sensitization programme for the Informal Food and Beverage sector of the Tourism Industry. This was done in partnership with the various Trade Associations under the Ghana Tourism Federation (GHATOF) which is the umbrella body of the Trade Associations / Private Sector wing. According to the CEO of the Ghana Tourism Authority, Mr. Akwasi Agyeman, the training programme falls in line with the Authority’s mandate of regulating the industry to ensure quality service delivery.
The training seeks to enhance the skills of informal food and beverage enterprise operators. This is in line with efforts to provide quality service to visitors from the diaspora as they come home for the “Year of Return, Ghana 2019”.
The Training Programme as funded by the Tourism Development Fund (TDF) was supported by the Agricultural Development Bank (ADB), the Consolidated Bank of Ghana (CBG) and the Universal Merchant Bank (UMB). These banks collect the 1% Tourism levy from Tourism Operators nationwide for deposit into the Tourism Development Fund on behalf of the Ghana Tourism Authority.
Present at the training programme held at the Centre for National Culture (CNC), Cape Coast in the Central Region were Executives of the Ghana Tourism Federation (GHATOF) in the region, officials of the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA) and Tourism Development Fund (TDF). Officials include Mr. Ekow Sampson, Deputy Chief Executive (Operations), Mr. Prince Essah, Tourism Development Fund Manager, Mr. Alex Boakye (Manager, Standards and Quality Assurance, GTA Head Office, Accra), Mr. Kwame Gyasi (Regional Manager, Central Region, GTA), Dr. Mrs. Patricia Owusu-Darko, Training Facilitator and Dean of the Graduate School of the Kumasi Technical University (KTU), Mr. Maxwell Amo Ghunney – Regional Chairman and National Organiser of NADBOA, Mr. J. R. Quainoo – Regional Chairman of Ghana Bar Operators Association (GHABOA), Albert Aidoo-President and Executive of Indigenous Caterers Association, Isaac Kojo Biney – Cape Coast Branch of NADBOA.
Present at the training programme held at Melody Hotel, Takoradi, Western Region were Executives of the Ghana Tourism Federation (GHATOF) in the region, officials of the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA) and Tourism Development Fund (TDF). They include Mr. Ekow Sampson, Deputy Chief Executive (Operations), GTA, Mr. Alex Boakye (Manager, Standards and Quality Assurance, GTA Head Office, Accra), Mr. George Ansere (Regional Manager, Western Region, GTA), Dr. Mrs. Patricia Owusu-Darko, Training Facilitator and Dean of the Graduate School of the Kumasi Technical University (KTU), Rosemond Essuman (Financial Secretary of Traditional Caterers Association Western Region, Nana Oteng (Chairman) and Gladys Otoo (Vice Chairperson) of National Drinking Bar Operators Association (NADBOA).
The training programme commenced in the Greater Accra, Tema and Eastern Regions of Ghana. This offered the operators to learn and share ideas on how to keep their food and drinks in a safe hygienic condition. Moreover, it gave Operators the opportunity to learn about the Legislative Instruments that regulates the food and beverage sector as well as basic bookkeeping principles.
The Informal sector is a key component of the Tourism Industry since they are the first point of call to tourists and the Global African Family (People of African descent) as we commemorate the slave trade movement and celebrate African resilience in “THE YEAR OF RETURN, GHANA 2019”. The Informal Sector constitutes about 80% of the Tourism Industry and therefore, there was the need to train operators on issues that will help boost their businesses and encourage them to contribute substantially to the Tourism Development Fund (TDF).
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. Moreover, the issue of quality service delivery is very paramount to the operations of the Ghana Tourism Authority. It is therefore imperative that food and beverage vendors were trained to apply best and healthy practices as they serve the consuming public, tourists as well as Africans in the diaspora who have arrived for the “YEAR OF RETURN, GHANA 2019”.
The Operators on their part expressed appreciation to the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA) and the Tourism Development Fund (TDF) for the training and indicated that they will impact same knowledge acquired to their fellow workers and colleagues in order to enhance the quality of service delivered to boost the tourism industry.
The Training programme covered the following areas :
• Food safety and Hygiene
• Food and Beverage Services
• Legislative Instruments (LI) 2238 and 2185
• Finance and Accounting Basics (Book Keeping)
A large number of Operators have been trained so far across the country comprising Greater Accra, Tema, Eastern, Central and Western Regions of Ghana.
The Training programme will continue in the Ashanti, Brong Ahafo, Northern, Volta, Upper East and Upper West Regions as follows:
i. ASHANTI – MONDAY, 9TH SEPTEMBER, 2019
ii. BRONG AHAFO – WEDNESDAY, 11TH SEPTEMBER, 2019
iii. NORTHERN – FRIDAY, 13TH SEPTEMBER, 2019
iv. UPPER EAST – MONDAY, 16TH SEPTEMBER, 2019
v. UPPER WEST – WEDNESDAY, 18TH SEPTEMBER, 2019
vi. VOLTA – TUESDAY, 24TH SEPTEMBER, 2019