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The Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS) has seized 993 expired bags of rice, worth Kshs. 2.3 million during market surveillance activities in Ortum, West Pokot County.
With the assistance of officers from the National Police Service (NPS), KEBS intercepted the expired rice, branded “KPL” and “Orient Thai”, packed in 25 kgs bags. “Repackaging of food of expired food products is serious malpractice that puts the health of consumers in grave danger,” said Lt.Col (Rtd.) Bernard Njiraini, Managing Director, KEBS. “We have intensified market surveillance activities to sustain efforts to get rid of substandard products in the market.”
“The seized products will be destroyed at the expense of the owners, in addition to any other legal action, as provided by the law,” he adds.
KEBS monitors the effectiveness of quality control measures for products sold in the country through factory inspections, product certifications, market surveillance activities at the factory, and market to ensure that the public is protected from harmful products.
As part of the product certification scheme, KEBS certifies and issues a Standardization Mark (SM) permit or Diamond Mark of Quality once the product complies with the relevant Kenya Standard and the manufacturing process conforms to the established scheme of supervision and control that ensures continuous process monitoring during manufacturing. Imported products are issued with an Import Standardization Mark (ISM) which is traceable to the Unique Consignment Reference (UCR) number after evaluation of the Certificate of Conformance (CoC).
It should be noted that any person who contravenes any of the provisions of subsections of the Standards Act, Cap 496, and Laws of Kenya mentioned above or fails to comply with any conditions in a permit, shall be guilty of an offence. We encourage the general public to “Wajibika Na KEBS” and be on the lookout for products suspected to be substandard. Wajibika Na KEBS is a program that allows the public to report cases about substandard products. To Wajibika, verify whether the S Mark permit on your product is valid by sending the code underneath the S Mark to 20023 (SM#Code) to get product validity status details. If the details are different, report to KEBS Toll-Free 1545 during official working hours of 8.00 AM to 1.00 PM and 2.00 PM to 5.00 PM, Monday to Friday.