Buying food from outside is a part of the Ghanaian culture. In fact, one of our favourite breakfast meals, Waakye, is hardly ever made at home. We buy food from outside when we have a craving or when we are just too lazy to cook. Sometimes, we even buy food just because we passed by the food joint and it looked so irresistible(I’m looking at you Kelewele).
However, while that’s all and good for the small food business scene, you need to be more selective when it comes to buying food outside. There are some signs that give food away as not being too hygienic. These are signs that you should be on the lookout for in order to avoid unfortunate things like finding worms in your food.
Take A Look At Your Surroundings
Sometimes when you’re trying to buy food and you want it badly enough, you overlook red flags and still get the food. However, no matter how much you want that fried rice from the check check joint, if their stand is right next to unclean gutter, let it go. Just consciously taking a look at the surroundings and asking yourself if you’re comfortable getting food from a place like that can save you from some 2am running stomach.
Ask If The Meal Is Hot
I’m pretty sure that at one point or another, we have all learned that heat kills germs. And all the medical stuff aside (please don’t put the medical stuff aside), eating a warm meal literally warms you up. You’ll enjoy your food more, and there are less health risks for you. So, just ask the vendor the next time that you go out to buy food. Basically, ask her (or him) to give you the food that is fresh out of the fire.
Watch The Vendor’s Personal Hygiene
Watch a food vendor’s habits when you are going to get something to eat. Do they talk too close to open trays of food? Do they wipe off their sweat and then pick up a piece of meat that goes on someone’s plate? All of these things are indications of just how much care about hygiene went into the making of the meals that they’re selling.
You Should Be Willing To Walk Away
Ghanaians can be very polite people. And this might stop you from walking away when you’re uncomfortable buying food from a particular vendor. Or you might just not like the idea of looking for another Waakye joint on a Sunday. But when it comes to buying food from outside, knowing when to walk away will ultimately be the right decision for your health.