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UNBS Directs Schools To Use App To Detect Non-certified Foods, Suppliers

The Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) has introduced the UNBS App, which is designed to help schools and institutions detect non-certified foods and certified food suppliers. The app can be downloaded from Google Play Store and the App Store, and once installed on a phone, it provides features that can identify both non-certified foods and certified suppliers.

During a dialogue held at Hotel Triangle in Mbarara City, UNBS officials engaged with administrators of primary and secondary schools, as well as food suppliers from the greater Ankore region. John Caesar Ashaba, the UNBS Mbarara Region Senior Surveillance Officer emphasized the importance of collective responsibility in ensuring that the food consumed is certified and meets standards.

Ashaba explained that the Bureau has limited human resources to meet the demands of everyone, and therefore, leveraging technology like the UNBS App enables them to achieve maximum output in their campaign to ensure that everyone has access to standard foods.

Kellen Ayebazibwe, the Mbarara District Inspector of Schools, urged UNBS to also focus on sensitizing schools about proper food storage standards to prevent contamination.

She highlighted that many schools neglect factors such as food supply, storage, handling, and serving practices.

Additionally, she mentioned the challenge of parents who provide food items like beans and matooke as a replacement for school fees, which are often uninspected and uncertified.

Joseph Lutaya, the Senior Certifying Officer of UNBS Mbarara Region, advised school administrators to closely supervise the storage of staple foods such as posho (maize meal) and beans, as well as the storage of packed food brought by students.

Lutaya suggested that the Ministry of Education collaborate with UNBS to construct proper food storage facilities in schools and raise awareness about appropriate food storage practices.

Atuhaire Jadrine, the head teacher of Jasse Infant School in Isingiro, appreciated the introduction of the UNBS App, noting that most food suppliers do not meet the required standards. Schools have faced challenges in distinguishing between certified and non-certified suppliers, and the app provides a valuable tool to address this issue.


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