The Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) has called upon all maize flour dealers to adhere to the maize flour quality standards as well as seek UNBS certification before placing their products on market.
The six month ultimatum (January- June 2021) was issued during an ongoing sensitization stakeholder engagement that was held with maize millers under the Operation Wealth Creation, Rubaga Grain Millers Association, and Masanafu Maize Millers plus on site capacity building visits to all millers across the country.
According to the UNBS, all products under mandatory standards require to be certified by body before being placed on the market under the Distinctive Mark Regulation 2018 and violation of this regulation attracts a fine not exceeding Five Hundred currency points (500) or punishment not exceeding five years or both
Recently Ugandan farmers and farm products like maize, milk have received constant rejection from their neighbors especially their main exporter Kenya and this was mainly attributed to the poor quality standards especially for the maize flour which risked the lives of their citizens due to health related complication caused by aflatoxins a substance that is related to cancer and other complication
Maize flour millers have therefore been advised to adhere to the quality standards requirements including among others; ensure that the business premises ,maize milling equipment and stores are regularly cleaned and the cleaning records kept well as required by the standards, have evidence of external and internal product testing ,record keeping and maintenance and ensure that no foreign matter like stone , wooden particles , hair or nails in the flour and avail magnets to get rid of metal that could have contaminated the maize flour during the milling process to minimize contamination and ensure safe maize flour on the market
UNBS has also released a list of 23 companies producing 27 brands of certified maize flour and maize grains including; Mandela Millers Limited, Grainpulse Limited, Nanziga Millers Association Ltd and Bembabazi Millers
UNBS noted that the body as received over 50 maize flour dealers and still in process of certification and therefore the list will be updated periodically