Plastic rice in Kenya? Govt response fails to allay fears

Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS) has denied claims that there is plastic rice being sold in Kenya.
The standards agency says the video circulating on social media showing the manufacturing of plastic rice is a normal process for  recycling plastic.

“Through it, used plastic products are recycled and converted into pellets, which can then be re-used to produce various plastic products,” said KEBS.

 A statement issued yesterday by KEBS Managing Director Evans Ongwae said the agency has been investigating the claims and assured Kenyans that there was no plastic rice on sale in the country.

“They tested the rice for aflatoxin, and grading, which determines the amount of inorganic matter, broken and immature grains, and moisture content in every consignment and found that they all met the required minimum standards,” he said.

See Also: How to distinguish between plastic rice and genuine rice

He said the KEBS surveillance teams have conducted several visits to the stores and collected samples which have been tested as per the East African and Kenya standards and the tests have confirmed the rice is safe for human consumption.

Mr Ongwae has further moved to assure the public that all imported rice is tested at the country of origin under the Pre-Export Verification of Conformity programme.

“The certificate of conformity is a confirmation that the imported goods have been inspected by relevant authorities, and that the food meets requirement of respective products standards, while products which do not meet the standards are rejected.

The KEBS response came after a local rice processor was accused of processing and selling inorganic rice in the Kenyan market.

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

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