A campaign by the government to reduce informal milk business in some parts of the country has yielded progress with approximately 60 per cent of the traders complying with the regulator’s guidelines on hygiene.
Kenya Dairy Board (KDB) chief inspector Evans Mwangi attributes the rise in compliance to the regulations by the traders to a robust training and awareness programme by the board among milk vendors over the years.
“We have recently stepped up inspection exercises, mainly to assess the level of compliance within the milk industry alongside identifying existing gaps that need to be addressed,” he told People Daily. Mwangi said after a two-day exercise in Ruiru town last week that KDB is trying to identify specific areas of concern regarding sale of milk alongside enforcement of the Dairy Industry Act.
“We conducted the exercise to assess the level of compliance and provide infrastructural framework of what needs to be done as far as businesses are concerned. We are also here to establish centres of advisory that will foster interaction between the board and stakeholders,” he added.
KDB has an existing partnership framework with Kenya Market Trust (KMT) to enhance quality and regulations through training of milk traders and dispenser operators. The institutions signed a memorandum of understanding last month in which KMT will conduct training for 250 traders across the country on safe milk handling to enhance quality and pilot a sustainable model for formal milk channels.
“There are areas of non-compliance relating to sale of milk, sourcing and how the product is disposed of to the consumer that KDB will address,’’ said Mwangi. He said the board’s technical team is working towards helping the few milk sellers who are unable to meet the requirements by offering technical expertise such as training and online interaction. Thika KDB branch officers led by manager Joyce Nyamwathi assisted in the inspection exercise.