PHOTO | FILEPHOTO | FILE
By SAMWEL OWINO, @owino_samwel [email protected]

Kenya Bureau of Standards (Kebs) has denied the existence of plastic rice in the country.

Kebs Managing Director Evans Ongwae said they sent their market surveillance team that conducted several store visits and collected samples.

The samples have been tested as per the East Africa and Kenya Standards on rice and all have confirmed that the rice currently in the market is safe for human consumption.

“There is no basis for the said allegations. The video circulating on social media shows a common process often conducted by manufacturers when recycling plastic materials. Through it, used plastic products are recycled and converted into pellets, which can then be re-used to produce various plastic products.” Mr Ongwae said.

“All imports are tested in the country of origin under the Pre-Export Verification of Conformity (PVoC) Programme. All imports including rice are to be accompanied with Certificates of Conformity (CoCs) when they arrive in the country,” added the Managing Director.

PRODUCT STANDARDS

Mr Ongwae said a certificate of conformity issued is a confirmation that the imports have been inspected against the relevant standards at source and found to meet the requirements of the respective product standards.

“Products that do not meet these requirements are issued with Non-Conformity Reports (NCR) and are rejected and not allowed to be exported to Kenya,” Mr Ongwae said.

Kebs urged consumers to submit samples of rice or any other product that they feel do not meet standards for testing at Kebs laboratories in Nairobi, Kisumu or Mombasa or immediately call toll free Line 0800221350.

The response by Kebs comes amid concerns by members of the public over an online video that went viral on social media last week purporting to demonstrate that the company’s products were inorganic.

The managing director said no one has provided any information so far on the claims of the plastic rice

“KEBS has requested those making the claims on plastic rice on social media and other media to provide information on the source or location of those dealing or retailing plastic rice. None has provided any information so far,” Mr Ongwae said.