PUBLIC ASSURANCE REGARDING THE THIRD PARTY CONFORMANCE ASSESSMENT AND CERTIFICATION SERVICES OFFERED BY THE MALAWI BUREAU OF STANDARDS (MBS) ON NON-FOOD GRADE RECTIFIED SPIRITS (ETHANOL) MANUFACTURED BY PRESS CANE LTD
The Malawi Bureau of Standards (MBS) is a statutory organization established in 1972 by an Act of Parliament, Cap 51:02 (revised as Act No. 14 of 2012), with a mandate to promote metrology, standardization and quality assurance of commodities and of the manufacture, production, processing or treatment thereof; and further to provide for matters incidental to, or connected with standardization.
Following a recent article that appeared in the Nyasa Times dated 19th November, 2021 titled “Malawi Bureau of Standards faulted for allowing PressCane sell substandard spirit” as alleged by two renowned Malawian health experts-cum-researchers. The MBS finds the article and the referred research misleading and would like to assure the Public of its trusted, accurate, impartial and independent third party conformance assessment and certification services that it has been offering on PressCane Ltd’s production unit, processes, and products in Chikwawa, amongst others, ever since the factory was about to start producing rectified spirits for distribution both on the local and international market. We therefore, would like to hereby confidently assure the general public that the PressCane spirits/ethanols that have been constantly assessed and certified by the MBS are actually complying products that have consistently been found to conform to their mandatory applicable Malawi Standards.
With due respect to our two renowned health experts-cum-researchers, and without prejudice, the MBS applied all the required conformance assessment criteria that accord stringent implementation of the mandatory Malawi Standard MS 573: 2007 Ethanol- Specification on PressCane Ltd’s ethanol factory and products. The public should also be reassured that the MBS periodically conducts factory audits/inspections coupled with periodical sampling and laboratory testing of PressCane Ltd’s non-food grade ethanol products for their continued conformance assessment to this standard. Testing has always been done using approved testing standards, calibrated, verified and serviced test equipment that has been maintained as per requirements of laboratory quality management system based on MS-ISO-17025: 2005 General requirements for the competence of testing and calibration laboratories.
In view of this, the public is assured that the competences of our laboratory personnel, suitability of the environment, equipment integrity, and performance of test methods are periodically assessed to ensure accuracy, conformity, reliability, and traceability of our test results to international standards. It is through fulfillment of the above stated requirements and demonstration of competence that led to the accreditation of some of the scopes in testing and calibration laboratories of the MBS in 2018 and the status has been maintained to date. The Bureau continues to participate in proficiency testing and interlaboratory comparisons with testing facilities globally (SADC, USA, Europe) as part of quality assurance apart from implementing a series of quality control processes in its laboratory activities.
We wish to advise the general public, the media, academia and all researchers that the Bureau is open to collaborate with individuals and organizations that desire to contribute to the process of standardization, quality assurance and metrology with a well-researched work that is premised on clear objectives, sound methodologies, sufficient relevant scientific data and logical conclusions.
The MBS wishes to retaliate that certification of products and services is done professionally, impartially and objectively in our quest to promote standardization and quality assurance in Malawi and that includes products from PRESCANE Malawi Limited.
For further information and clarification, please contact the Director General, Malawi Bureau of Standards, P.O. Box 946, Blantyre. You can also call on 0887 376/444/445/446/447 or email us at email@example.com alternatively visit our website at www.mbsmw.org
SYMON O. MANDALA