KEBS (Kenya Bureau of Standards) has suspended 10 brands of cooking oil from the market over health safety concerns.
KEBS explained that the decision was reached after it sampled some of the cooking oil products.
In a letter dated September 21, 2022, addressed to Wambui Mbarire, the CEO of Retail Traders Association of Kenya, KEBs director of market surveillance Peter Kaigwara said the brands should be withdrawn from the market. Kaigwara said samples for analysis were collected from retail outlets and assessed against the requirements of the Standards Act.
“The listed brands of non-compliant edible oils and fats that failed to meet the requirements of the standard: and to request your good office to notify your members to recall these brands and remove them from the supply chain from your members’ outlets across the country.
The suspended cooking oil brands include; Fresh Fri with Garlic Oil, Fry Mate, Bahari Fry, Fresh Fri, Gold and Pure Olive Gold, Postman, Rina, Salit, Tilly, and Top Fry.
However, it was noted that the suspension was temporary.
“Kindly note that this is not a ban on the brands but a temporary suspension to allow the manufacturers of the non-compliant brands to initiate and put in place effective corrective action under KEGS supervision to ensure that the non-compliant brands comply with the requirements of the respective Kenya Standards and Standards Act Cap 496, Laws of Kenya before being allowed back into the market,” it said in a letter.
How to check the quality of various cooking oil brands
Meanwhile, KEBS has advised to check the quality of various cooking oil products before purchasing.
“One should send the code (numbers) underneath the Standardization Mark logo to 20023 (i.e. type message SM# Code or ISM#code, for local and imported products respectively, and SMS to 20023) to get product manufacturing details and permit validity status.
“If the details are different, invalid, or not traceable to the platform, retailers should not purchase, stock, or offer for sale the products but instead report to KEBS through toll-free number 1545 during official working hours 8 am to 1 pm and 2 pm to 5 pm from Monday to Friday,” read the statement in part.