ZAMBIA Bureau of Standards (ZABS) has sold a total of 177 standards for various products between January and June 2016 to help local manufacturers produce and develop products that are safe, reliable and of good quality.
In a statement made available to the Daily Nation, ZABS head of marketing and public relations Hazel Zulu explained that this was in a bid to enhance the quality of products produced by industries and to protect consumers from buying products that were of substandard and harmful to human beings.
Ms. Zulu said that some companies were producing products that were harmful to human health and that ZABS was there to serve the country in the field of standardization, standards formulation, quality control or assurance, import and export quality inspections, certification and removal of technical barriers to trade.
“We are satisfied with the number of companies, particularly local ones that are coming forward to enquire about applicable standards in their areas of business as well as those that are buying and using standards. It’s unfortunate that some companies are still producing products not up to the required standard,” she said.
Ms. Zulu however said of late there had been increased levels of understanding and appreciation among industry players of the value that standards added to their businesses.
She also attributed the good performance to the concerted efforts staff at the bureau had been putting in to ensure citizens were not exposed to harmful commodities that could affect their health.
“We can also confidently attribute this development to the concerted effort that we have put in as a bureau to consistently dialogue with industry and provide them with the necessary information,” said Ms. Zulu.
Among the standards that topped the list in sales included “general principles of food hygiene’’, which is a standard that prescribes the general hygienic practice for uniform processing and handling of food and gives guidance on the proper cleaning and disinfection procedure.
She said that the petroleum industry code of practice which was a standard that specified the layout and design of petroleum bulk depots such as filling stations, and bottled drinking water which specified description, treatment, testing, packaging and labeling of bottled water for human consumption were also among top selling standards.
Ms. Zulu has urged local businesses to partner with the institution so that they could access standards that enhanced their product quality and promote public health, public safety and consequently economic growth.