Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) has translated into Luganda guidelines that small companies in the food industry are expected to follow to keep food and beverages free from contamination.
Smaller companies, majority of which engage in the selling of different food stuffs had for long complained that guidelines were hard to understand. They said it was one of the reasons why they couldn’t meet required standards.
UNBS Deputy Executive Director, Patricia Bageine Ejalu said the translation of of the standards in local languages and their simplification will the producers to understand what exactly is required and how best they can implement them.Sh said it is part of the effort to ensure that their products are acceptable on the local, regional and international markets.
Uganda Small Scale Industries Association (USSIA) Executive Secretary, Veronica Namwanje told reporters in Kampala on Thursday that language barrier had been identified as the main issue for failure by small-scale producers in the food and beverage sector to implement standards.
The standards agency said it plans to translate these standards into other languages like Luo and Runyankole.
At least 7,000 small businesses will receive these guidelines.
The simplified guidelines range from basic ones like “don’t store directly on the floor; don’t store spoilt materials with good ones, or provide adequate storage space; and maintain the storage in clean and well organized.
Easy as they may appear, a lot of businessmen and women struggle to achieve them. This is because they may need to spend extra cash to for instance get extra space.
The Principal Standards Officer at UNBS Hakim Mufumbiro said over 55 million shillings was spent on the simplification process including technical meetings, consultancy fees, printing of materials among others.