The Ministry of Agriculture (MoA) Smallholder Agriculture Transformation and Agribusiness Revitalization Project (STAR-P), project has sponsored the study of two Microbiology Technicians of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry at the Ghana Standard Authority, in Accra, Ghana, a press release from MoA STAR-P has disclosed.
According to the release, while away for two weeks, Mr. Alexander D. Leinkpor and Mrs. Zuala Koffa-Wleh are expected to study microbiology, one of the requirements to Liberia’s quest to obtaining international accreditation of its National Standard Laboratory (NSL) located at the Ministry of Commerce and Industry.
Microbiology is the study of microscopic organisms, such as bacteria, viruses, archaea, fungi and protozoa which can be detected from commodities before they are qualified for export.
The National Standards Laboratory of Liberia established in 2011, is to provide quality services in the areas of product testing and calibration for the purpose of improving the sanitary phyto-sanitary (SPS) system of Liberia, meeting food and basic commodities quality and control and facilitating trade.
The Microbiology Laboratory is the major testing component of the National Standards Laboratory (NSL), and strictly complies with international standards in all laboratory practices.
Its major goal is providing quality microbiological testing services for the purpose of protecting consumer economic interest, verify producer claims, and ensure that product does not contain microbial contaminations.
According to the release, when internationally accredited, the country will now be qualified to provide certification for export of locally made food products directly to international markets. This will help alleviate the hurdles farmers and producers experience in exporting their products.
Speaking on behalf of the STAR-P in Gardnerville on Friday March 13, 2021 before their departure, Mr. Ansu Abraham Metzger, National Project Coordinator stated that the Ministry of Agriculture through the Project was excited to facilitate the capacity building of the two staffers which will add value to the Standard Lab and raise Liberia’s profile in the international community.
Mr. Metzger admonished them to use the opportunity wisely as the Project continues to provide more support to the Ministry of Commerce in meeting the needs of its targets in the value chains of rice, oil palm and horticulture.
In separate responses, Mr. Alexander D. Leinkpor and Mrs. Zuala Koffa-Wleh thanked the Ministry of Agriculture for the support and promised to utilize the opportunity to acquire more knowledge that will facilitate Liberia’s accreditation to international status.