Beverage company sealed off for selling uncertified drinking water

Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) has sealed off Halaal Food and Beverages Limited in Old Kampala for producing and selling uncertified water, contrary to the ‘Use of UNBS Distinctive Mark Regulation, 2018’ and the US EAS 153: 2014, Packaged drinking water Specification.

The regulation states that all products covered by mandatory standards like packaged drinking water must be certified by UNBS and issued with a Distinctive Mark before they are allowed on the market.

Halaal Food and Beverages Limited was also found refilling old disposable PET water bottles from other companies with uncertified water for sale.

UNBS Market surveillance team acted on a tip-off from Uganda Revenue Authority that a truck, registration number UAW 407K, had been seen in Kitintale Kampala distributing drinking water that is suspected to be uncertified.

UNBS had earlier suspended the Production Operations of the company until it put in place corrective actions to ensure that its products meet standards.

However, the company was found in production with some of the Halaal branded bottles bearing the UNBS distinctive mark illegally.

40 jumbo bottles; some of 5 litres and others of 18.9 litres, filled with the uncertified water, were seized, the production area was sealed off and the manufacturer was summoned to UNBS offices to record a statement and further prosecution.

Selling and distributing substandard products is an offence as per the UNBS Act and suspects, if found guilty, 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 continues to perform its mandate of enforcing standards to protect the health and safety of consumers and the environment against dangerous and sub-standard products.