ICFMH organized and sponsored a training workshop on molecular methods for food microbiology and safety in Accra (Ghana) in December 11-17, 2017.
Sixteen African food microbiologists from 7 countries (Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Nigeria, Sudan and Uganda) attended the workshop. This is the follow-up activity of the ICFMH microbial food safety workshop in Accra, Ghana in 2014. The main goal was to advance food microbiology research and microbial food safety surveillance in Africa using modern molecular methods.
The workshop began with the welcome speeches given by Professor Mogens Jakobsen, Honorary President of ICFMH, and by Professor Mary Obodai, Director of the Food Research Institute of Ghana. Professor Wisdom Amoa-Awua presented his experience of long-term collaborations on food microbiology within the African continent and between Africa and Europe. One participant from each country presented overall microbial food safety issues and methods in use in his/her country. The laboratory training was orchestrated with group discussion as well as serial lectures on novel molecular methods and metagenomic approaches for food microbiology and safety offered by Professors Luca Cocolin and Weihuan Fang, two ICFMH board members. The training included food sample spiking with major foodborne pathogens, Lactobacillus and yeast, DNA/RNA extraction, multiplex PCR and quantitative PCR. Ms. Zuohuan Wang from Zhejiang University, China guided the laboratory practice. The training ended in success thanks to the joint efforts by coordinators, lecturers and local hosts, the Ghanaian Food Research Institute and the University of Ghana Biotechnology Center where excellent laboratory facilities and technical support were available. Initiated at the end of the workshop was the next joint activity on microbial food safety in fresh produce and potential funding sources with Dr. Sylvain Deley Dabadé from the University of Abomey-Calavi, Benin as the coordinator.
Images taken during the workshop.