‘Wowo’ water brand seized, manufacturer summoned

The Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) seized jumbo water bottles of the ‘Wowo’ brand manufactured by SAOL Limited in Kitende for selling uncertified products contrary to the Use of UNBS Distinctive Mark Regulation, 2018.

According to the regulation, all products covered by compulsory standards such as packaged drinking water must be certified by UNBS and issued with a Distinctive Mark before they are allowed on the market.

The UNBS Market Surveillance Team acted on a complaint from the Uganda Police that the company was producing drinking water in jumbo-size bottles without following standards.

During inspection, the UNBS Team discovered that the manufacturing premises did not comply with the standards for production of packaged drinking water (US EAS 153:2014 – Packaged drinking water Specification). The products also had misleading labels with two different addresses.

A total of 25 bottles of 19.9 litres each were seized and samples of the water will be submitted to UNBS laboratory for testing. In addition, the manufacturer was summoned to report to UNBS CID Office to record a statement and possible prosecution.

The UNBS Act prohibits the sell and distribution of substandard products.  If found guilty offenders are liable to a fine of not less than 1000 currency points (Shs20 million) or a jail term of not less than three years or both.

UNBS will continue to perform its mandate of enforcing standards to protect the health and safety of consumers and the environment against dangerous and sub-standard products.