UGANDA – The Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) has introduced the groundbreaking UNBS App in a pioneering move to promote food safety and quality assurance in schools and institutions.

This revolutionary mobile application, available for download on both Google Play Store and the App Store, equips users with the power to detect non-certified foods and identify reliable certified food suppliers, ushering in a new era of confidence in the food supply chain.

At a dialogue held in Mbarara City’s esteemed Hotel Triangle, UNBS officials engaged with administrators of primary and secondary schools, as well as food suppliers from the greater Ankore region.

During this momentous event, John Caesar Ashaba, the UNBS Mbarara Region Senior Surveillance Officer, highlighted the paramount importance of collective responsibility in ensuring that the food consumed by students is certified and adheres to stringent quality standards.

Ashaba emphasized that, while UNBS’s human resources are limited, leveraging cutting-edge technology through the UNBS App allows them to achieve maximum efficiency in their campaign to ensure access to standard and safe foods for everyone.

Kellen Ayebazibwe, the Mbarara District Inspector of Schools, expressed the need for a comprehensive approach to food safety in educational institutions.

She urged UNBS to prioritize sensitizing schools about proper food storage standards to prevent contamination. Neglecting factors such as food supply, storage, handling, and serving practices can jeopardize the health and well-being of students.

Ayebazibwe also raised concerns about parents providing uninspected and uncertified food items, such as beans and matooke, as a replacement for school fees. This practice poses additional risks to the safety of students’ meals and underscores the significance of UNBS’s efforts to ensure the certification of food supplies.

Taking ownership of food storage

Joseph Lutaya, the Senior Certifying Officer of UNBS Mbarara Region, underlined the vital role of school administrators in closely supervising the storage of staple foods like posho (maize meal) and beans, as well as packed food brought by students.

To further enhance food safety standards, Lutaya suggested a collaboration between the Ministry of Education and UNBS to construct proper food storage facilities in schools and raise awareness about appropriate food storage practices.

With the UNBS App taking center stage, schools and institutions are empowered to become active participants in ensuring food safety and quality.

By detecting non-certified foods and identifying trusted certified suppliers, educators can prioritize the health and well-being of their students. As this innovative technology revolutionizes the food certification landscape, Uganda is poised to set new standards for food safety and inspire confidence in consumers throughout the country.

In line with UNBS’s commitment to promoting food safety across various sectors, plans are underway to expand the reach of the UNBS App to other industries beyond schools.

The Bureau aims to extend its revolutionary digital tool to restaurants, hotels, and consumers at large, empowering them to make informed decisions about the quality of the food they consume.

The Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS) also recently launched the KEBS App to safeguard consumers from substandard and prohibited products by minimizing human interventions in KEBS operations.

With this interactive platform, customers can access various services conveniently and efficiently, ushering in a new era of consumer protection.

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