By Patience Lunda:
The Malawi Bureau of Standards (MBS) has revoked certification and suspended operations of 10 business operators in Mzuzu and Lilongwe for operating below minimum requirements of food handling.
The 10 companies include Suhanna continental Bakery, Sanaa Superstore-Northend Mall Mzuzu, Midland Fast Foods, Macdeena Cash N Carry Mzuzu, Chipiku Stores Game Complex, Lilongwe, Immaculate Lodge Mzuzu, Korea Gardens, Lilongwe, Perekezi Enterprises, Mzuzu Coffee Planters Cooperative Union Limited and Our Daily Bread Bakery.
A statement issued by MBS, Saturday, indicates that a recent routine regulatory conformity assessment activity by the bureau revealed that the business operators were operating below the minimum requirements of Malawi Standard (MS) 21: 2002; food and food processing units-code or hygienic conditions, exposing the products and services to significant food safety risk.
According to MBS, when all shortfalls are addressed, the certification will be reissued, and suspension will be lifted.
“MBS would like to assure the general public that we are currently continuing with the conformity assessments and taking appropriate actions on the any defective products and services offered across the country,” the statement reads.
Consumers Association of Malawi (Cama) Executive Director John Kapito said it is disheartening that businesses continue disregarding hygiene standards once they are given back certificates.
“It is the mandate of MBS to inspect but what we see is that little is being done and the market is full of such individuals and we want to see something serious to be done so that they can start behaving. After a week or so, they will be given back the certification and they will do the very same things, which is very sad,” Kapito said.