Regulation of street foods in Kumasi: stakeholder practices and perceptions

Thumbnail Image
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Street foods serve as an important source of employment and food for urban residents. Consequently, the effective regulation of street foods has been identified as crucial in satisfying the health and food needs of consumers, the income and employment needs of vendors, and the well-being of urban communities in general. Nonetheless, very little research has been conducted in Ghana focusing primarily on the regulation of street foods. This research complements existing knowledge on street foods in Ghana by focusing on the regulation of street foods and the practices and perceptions of stakeholders in regulation. This research employed the qualitative research tools of observation and interview to investigate the legal and institutional framework of street food regulations, the practices, perceptions, and interactions among stakeholders and, the challenges involved in the regulation of street foods in Kumasi, Ghana. This research revealed that the laws and policies guiding regulations are not specific to street foods and the body charged with the regulation of street foods faces significant resource challenges and performs other non-street food regulatory functions as well. The involvement of stakeholders was found to be mostly centered on the education of food vendors, leaving important functions like inspection to be performed by only the street food regulatory body. Even though the relationship between regulators and street food vendors was found to be marked by distrust and, occasionally by hostility, the relationship was also mediated by informal relations and agreements. This research makes recommendations for the improvement of communication between regulators and vendors in order to develop trust, and the adoption of inclusive approaches towards improving regulations that address the needs of both vendors and regulators.
A Thesis Submitted to the Department of Sociology and Social Work, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Sociology, 2015