About 30% of poultry imported into the country are injected with water, Dr. Hannah Louisa Bissiw, Deputy Minister of Food and Agriculture has revealed.Dr. Bissiw disclosed this in an interview with Media practitioner Thursday December 10.
According to the Deputy Minister, this practice is done by the perpetrators in order to increase the weight of the chicken.
“Poultry is sold by weight not by numbers. Take a normal syringe, pull water, inject about a cup full of water and then tie it and freeze it, when it is well frozen, bring it, and weigh it back and you will see the weight gain that you will get,” she explained.
Total meat imports rose from 97,719 metric tonnes in 2012 to 183,949 metric tonnes in 2013, registering an increase of 88 per cent.
Dr. Bissiw further disclosed that “70% of what is imported to Africa and Asia also contain arsenic acid. What does this arsenic acid do? It causes cancer,” she further stated.
Responding to a question about the health implications and the reasons the Ministry cannot place a ban on the importation of such products, Dr. Bissiw said there are protocols that govern trading and the authorities take action only when the guidelines are contravened.
“There is regulation on how poultry and other meat products are brought into the country, so, these regulations are what we use. If anyone goes contrary, we ban it then.”
In 2014, Dr. Bissiw disclosed at the launch of the Ghana Broiler Revitalisation Project in Accra that “we consume an average of 225,000 metric tonnes of meat annually and interestingly domestic production constitutes only 30 per cent of our meat production while poultry imports alone constitute 80 per cent of our total meat imports.”
Watch the video below to see how some traders inject water into chicken products: