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The Food Safety and Quality Authority of The Gambia (FSQA) is established by an Act of Parliament called The Food Safety and Quality Act, 2011 and it became operational in 2013. The FSQA is the sole National Competent Authority with powers of delegation mandated to officially control the safety and quality of food and animal feed whether locally produced, imported or destined for export.
The overall official control of food safety and quality includes:
- Ensuring that food and feed comply with legal requirements, or where appropriate with approved codes of good practice;
- Carrying out inspection, sampling and certification of food and feed for import and export when so required;
- Inspecting establishments, processes and products throughout the production and distribution chain;
- Assessing laboratory services in terms of technical capacity to carry out food and feed analysis for official control;
- Participate in activities relating to standards and technical regulations for food and feed at the national and international levels;
- Ensuring the adopted inspection procedures are based on risk assessment.
The FSQA is placed under the Office of The Vice President as its line Ministry for reporting and provision of political support for the implementation of its mandate. The work of the Authority is expected to contribute to consumer health and safety, the facilitation of trade and control of fraudulent and deceptive food marketing, labeling and advertising practices.
To ensure an integrated and coherent approach by ensuring that all relevant food safety hazards are taken into account and that resources are allocated to controls according to risk of food safety hazards impacting negatively on consumer health, trade and commerce.
To strengthen compliance to standards by Food Business Operators to ensure the availability of safe and quality food for all.