UNBS opens regional food safety laboratory in Gulu
The Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) has opened a food safety testing laboratory for the northern region based in Gulu.
The equipment for the laboratory was donated by VODP through the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries (MAAIF) and Trade Mark East Africa (TMEA) funded by the Danish government.
According to UNBS, this laboratory equipment is worth $ 988,470 while Trade Mark East Africa (TMEA) through the Danish Government has so far provided laboratory equipment worth $ 4,455,283 to the bureau.
The minister of State for Industry, David Bahati welcomed the bureau’s initiative of decentralising its services to the regional offices because this will support the government’s industrialisation agenda.
He noted that the government programmes such as the Parish Development Model (PDM) which is expected to stimulate production and value addition will require UNBS services of providing quality assurance to enable such products access both the domestic and export markets.
According to David Livingstone Ebiru, the executive director at UNBS, the bureau intends to open similar testing laboratories for eastern region based in Mbale and for Western Region based in Mbarara in the near future.
He noted that by moving the testing laboratories nearer to the majority of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) based in the countryside, the cost of doing business will reduce since enterprises which used to seek testing services from UNBS central laboratories in Kampala can now get them at regional offices.
The regional food safety laboratories will provide conformity assessment services to enterprises and industries involved in processing and value addition to ensure that their products meet the minimum quality standards before being put on the market.
The laboratories will be testing both food and non-food products such as edible fats and oils, milk and milk products, water, fruits and vegetables, cereals and cereal products, grains and animal products, among others.
Source – Nilepost.co.ug