Rwanda has banned several Kenyan-produced peanut butter and maize flour brands from its market following their recall by Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS) due to high levels of aflatoxins.
Aflatoxins are poisonous carcinogens that are produced by certain molds which grow in soil, decaying vegetation, hay, and grains.
According to Rwanda Foods and Drugs Authority (Rwanda FDA), the products were found on the Rwandan market and necessary measures were taken immediately.
“In our inspection, today, we also seized and quarantined over 100 of those products and so now we have notified the sellers about those products. Those products should be returned to the distributors,” Dr Charles Karangwa, Acting Director General at Rwanda FDA, told The New Times.
The products include True Nuts (Truenutz Kenya), Fressy (Fressy Food Company Limited), Supa Meal (Supacosm Products Limited), Nuteez (Jetlak Foods Limited), Sue's Naturals (Nature's Way Health), Zesta (Truefoods Limited) and Nutty by Nature (Target Distributors) for peanut butter.
And the five maize brands are Dola by Kitui Four Mills, Kifaru by Alpha Grain Limited, Starehe by Pan African Grain Millers, 210 Two Ten by Kenblest Limited and Jembe by Kensal Rise Limited for maize flour butter.
“We didn’t have to run the tests again because we have a great collaboration with KEBS and they are a trusted institution so there was no need for further investigations. We immediately issued quarantine warrants,” added Dr Karangwa.
In their statement KEBS announced that the above mentioned companies should recall all the substandard products and institute corrective actions.
KEBS will confirm their standards and lift the ban once the corrective measures have been met.
Rwanda FDA genesis
Rwanda Foods and Drugs Authority was established last year in February but began its operations this year in July.
According to the Acting Director, the institution is still recording the commodities on the Rwandan market.
Upon arrival, a new commodity undergoes testing by Rwanda FDA.
Beyond that, Rwanda FDA continues to monitor the quality and standards of goods on the market by conducting regular sample tests of goods already on the market for proper monitoring and ensuring the standard quality.