Watchdogs give rice consignment at port clean bill of health

Acting Kenya Bureau of Standards Managing Director Esther Ngari. [Elvis Ogina, Standard]

Kenyan authorities have given a consignment of imported rice that was being held at Mombasa Port a clean bill of health.

This is according to the Parliamentary Departmental Committee on Trade, Industry, and Cooperatives, the Kenya Bureau of Standards (Kebs) and the Anti-Counterfeit Authority (ACA).

Committee Chairman James Gakuya said the consignment of Pearl Rice in question had met all health and quality benchmarks after being subjected to requisite tests.

"Our mission is clear - safeguard the health and trust of our people. This requires dedication, precision, and a systematic approach," said Mr Gakuya.

Public eye

His sentiments were echoed by Kebs acting Managing Director Esther Ngari.

"Indeed, the intricacies of this operation commenced far earlier than is apparent to the public eye. On July 7, 2022, guided by the stringent parameters of the Kenya Standard Specification for Milled Rice, KS EAS 128:2017, our teams were set on a clear course," she said.

"Their sole focus was to scrutinise every detail of the 'Pearl Rice' consignment from Pakistan."

"Dispatched by PK M Amar Enterprises - Karachi, this consignment bore significant weight. Varun Distributors Ltd, the awaiting recipient, anticipated a cargo conforming strictly to our national standards. It was our duty to ensure that what reached them was nothing short of excellence."

The shipment, comprising 10,000 bags weighing 50kg, was first cleared on July 20, 2022, before further tests were conducted on September 16 last year.

Ms Ngari said the matter has now been concluded and assured members of the public about the quality of the rice once it hits the market.

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