Economy

Kebs bans 7 brands of peanut butter for high aflatoxin levels


A Kebs employee in a Mombasa laboratory. PHOTO | LABAN WALLOGA | NMG

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Summary

  • Kebs asked Trufoods to recall its “Zesta”, Jetlak Foods to suspend the sale of “Nuteez” and Truenutz Kenya to revoke the sale of its “True Nuts”.
  • Aflatoxin is a class of toxic compounds produced by certain molds found in foods. It can cause liver damage and cancer.
  • The suspension comes just months after Kebs lifted an earlier ban on Nuteez brand peanut butter due to aflatoxin contamination.

The Kenya Bureau of Standard (Kebs) has ordered manufacturers to withdraw seven other brands of peanut butter from the market citing high levels of aflatoxin.

The agency asked Trufoods to recall its “Zesta”, Jetlak Foods to suspend the sale of “Nuteez” and Truenutz Kenya to revoke the sale of its “True Nuts”.

Others are Supacosm Products (Supa Meal), Nature’s Way Health (Sue’s Naturals), Fressy Food Company (Fressy) and Target Distributors (Nutty by Nature).

“Their aflatoxin levels are above the maximum limit allowed by the standard,” read a statement from the agency.

Aflatoxin is a class of toxic compounds produced by certain molds found in foods. It can cause liver damage and cancer.

“Therefore, Kebs has also suspended the licenses of these companies, which allows them to use the standardization mark.”

In the notice issued on Monday, Kebs did not indicate to what extent each of the products violated legal aflatoxin levels.

However, the Kenya standard, ‘KS EAS 60: 2013, a legal specification for peanut butter, states that the maximum total aflatoxin content should be 15 parts per billion (ppb) and gives a maximum value for the aflatoxin B1 of 5 ppb maximum.

The suspension comes just months after Kebs lifted an earlier ban on Nuteez brand peanut butter due to aflatoxin contamination.

Kebs said Nuteez was allowed to return after inspecting its facilities and ensuring that measures were in place to protect products intended for human consumption.


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