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Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Govt probes unsafe & hazardous products in Zim’s retail chains

Story by Stanley James, Business Editor

ZIMBABWE is targeting improved consumer welfare from unsafe and hazardous goods as the government investigates the alleged sale of illicit products by some retail outlets.

The Minister of Industry and Commerce, Honourable Sithembiso Nyoni, made the revelations at a press conference this Saturday where she raised concern over the alleged sale of the unsafe commodities within the country’s retail outlets.

“My Ministry is mandated to improving consumer welfare and economic growth through the Consumer Protection Act ( Chapter 14:44), which inter alia is meant to protect consumers from the consumption of unsafe and hazardous products including illicit drugs, alcoholic beverages illegally manufactured and some imported into the country.The ministry has noted with concern that these substances are now available in the ordinary supermarkets , grocery shops as well as tuckshops, this development has exacerbated drug and substance abuse among the youths as they now have easy access to these shops,” she said.

She added that government will therefore be rolling out countrywide investigations,“To this end, the ministry calls upon all manufacturers of alcoholic beverages to adhere to Statutory Instrument 25 of 2001 on Food and Food Standards ( alcoholic beverages) as well as the Trade Measures Act ( chapter 14:23) in order to protect consumers from consumption of unsafe/ hazardous goods, the ministry therefore urges all supermarkets and grocery shops to desist from stocking and trading illicit alcoholic beverages as well as those smuggled into the country.

“The ministry shall also be engaging responsible authorities including Standards Association of Zimbabwe to investigate the contents of these illicit alcoholic beverages in order to fully inform the consumers,” noted Honourable Nyoni.

The government has also operationalised the Consumer Protection Commission of Zimbabwe to ensure transparency and fair treatment of buyers.

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