Smedi champions product certification
The Small and Medium Enterprises Development Institute (Smedi) has begun a programme meant to champion product certification among the Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in the country.
The move is complimentary towards the Buy Malawi Strategy campaign.
Smedi Publicist, Mian Mpesi, said product certification on local products by the Malawi Bureau of Standards (MBS) will ensure the production of quality Malawian products which will be competitive on both domestic and international markets thereby increasing the revenue base of MSMEs.
She said Smedi is, currently, sensitising MSMEs on the importance of involving the MBS at an early stage of their production.
“Over the years, we observed that many MSMEs involve the MBS at a very later stage where the bureau has to audit the samples for product conformity assessment and auditing the process for compliance with mandatory Malawi standards.
“In many cases, the MSMEs fail the audit since production is initiated without the knowledge of the standards to conform to. In addition, the infrastructures are also faulted as many of them have not been constructed according to the standard,” said Mpesi.
She said through the sensitisations, Smedi would like to make sure that conformity assessment procedure by which the MBS, through the Quality Assurance Services Department, gives a written assurance or a quality mark that a product, service or process conforms to specified requirements are met.
“Smedi in collaboration with the cooperatives identified, will facilitate the certification process by ensuring that the cooperatives are aware of the specific product standard that is edible oils standard, MS 21 (food and personal hygiene standard) and MS 19 (packaging and labeling standard).
“On the other hand, Smedi will be linking with MBS to follow up on the bureau’s surveillance visits to the factories and ensuring minimum delays are made,” she said.