NAIROBI, KENYA: The Kenya Bureau of Standards(KEBS) has flagged down 30 companies it says are selling substandard sanitisers that might be harmful or compromise the safety of the public.
In a press statement sent to newsrooms, the quality and safety regulator noted that following the declaration of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) as a pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the attendant recommendations to use sanitisers as a means of mitigating the spread, there has been an upsurge in demand for this category of products.
“Following market surveillance activities, we wish to communicate to the public the list of hand sanitisers that have been ascertained as not meeting the requirements of KS EAS 789; Kenya Standard specification for instant hand sanitisers. This standard has set the minimum requirement of the alcohol content at 60 per cent among other parameters that must be complied with before the products are certified and issued with the mandatory standardisation mark permits and offered for sale,” said Kebs.
The recommended sanitisers, it said contain antiseptic properties or agents that when used disinfect the hands and can be used on their own when soap and water are not available and they protect users by eliminating or reducing viruses, bacteria, and other disease-causing pathogens but the flagged ones do not.
“It is against this background that we share with the public the below listed substandard/non-compliant sanitisers which have been found not to meet the standard and whose permits have been suspended with immediate effect to enable consumers to make informed choices that will help to ‘flatten the curve’ of spread and infection of COVID-19. The public shall also be informed once these anomalies have been corrected and the products are conforming,” added Kebs.
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The list of substandard sanitisers currently being sold to the public are the Cascade industries limited that manufactures (Scental), Amua industries(Super-guard), Flame tree Africa Limited(Zoe), Spectra Chemicals (k) Ltd(Safi), Chandaria Industries(Velvex), Mayim Chayim Ltd(MCL), Goodlife pharmacy Africa Ltd(Goodlife), Tania East Africa ltd(Spot X), Nine yards Holding(Max) and Impact Chemicals Ltd(Duogel).
Others are Ellena products (k) Ltd(Ellena), Alison products (k) Ltd(Alison's), Afrigo Kenya Ltd (Banlo), Yarash Products Company ltd(Rak),Import from Indonesia(Lovillea), Latest International Investments(Latest), Jomasons Enterprises(Eripride), C.CI LTD(Clean Hands), Sphinx Pharmaceutical ltd(Disanita), Suprima Industries Kenya(Skin Mate), Amna Industries (Super-guard), no company indicated(Palm maximum), Embechem graphics enterprises( Quick Hand), Ruysun Products(Ruysun Advance), Barjor chemicals(Vesrose), Kenbrand investments ltd(LiLi), no company indicated(O-Rie), Vitafoam Ltd(Vitaclean), Priderock Emporium Ltd(Antiseptic Vibes) and Palvene Sterile Chemical( Palvene).
The standards body instructed the manufacturers of the said products to discontinue manufacturing or offering for sale the affected sanitisers and recall all of them from the market and institute corrective actions whose effectiveness shall be confirmed by KEBS before the suspension of permits is lifted.
“Manufacturers are advised to strictly adhere to marking and labelling requirements as per the relevant Standard. Besides, manufacturers shall state the composition of the sanitisers,” it said, adding 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.