KEBS Intros New and Limited Access to Standards for Food Products


The Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS) has introduced five new standards to improve safety and quality of food additives.

This follows surging demands for additives, necessitating the creation of the new specifications for commonly used additives to ascertain their quality and safety.

Specifically, the use of nonnutritive sweeteners for special dietary purposes in both foods and beverages (soft drinks) has seen notable growth in the recent past.

According to KEBS, the set of standards are the first in the priority list for food additives based on the volume of use both in Kenya and the East Africa region thus facilitating trade.

Besides, the newly adopted standards provide the criteria to determine the purity, safety and quality parameters for baker’s yeast, sucralose, aspartame, saccharin and baking powder.

Here is a summary of the approved food standards in the food division:

1.       KS EAS 993:2020 Baking Powder – Specification

2.       KS EAS 994:2020 Food grade Sucralose (INS 955) – Specification

3.       KS EAS 995:2020 Food Grade Saccharin (INS 954) – Specification

4.       KS EAS 996:2020 Food grade Aspartame (INS 951) – Specification

5.       KS EAS 997:2020 Baker’s yeast – Specification

The full list of the standards that have been approved and confirmed by the National Standards Council in November 2020 can be read here.

KEBS is offering free access to selected Standards to interested parties, stakeholders, manufacturers, and the public. Access is only available for a limited time here under the PPEs Free Standards button.

What they said

The newly approved standards will provide a basis to ascertain the quality, purity and safety of the food additives which is important, as first step to ensure safe use as guided by the General Standard for Food additives. As a matter of fact, the use of food additives in food processing is technologically unavoidable with emphasis on justifiable safe use hence the need to establish quality and safety specification standards. This will facilitate trade while ensuring safe and sufficient food for a growing economy.

Food additives will also be produced, prepared and handled in accordance with code of practice for hygiene in the food industry which lays emphasis to both Good Manufacturing Practice and use of food safety systems such as Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP), thus further assuring consumers of the quality and safety of what they consume.

Ltd. Col. (Rtd) Bernard Njiraini, Managing Director, Kenya Bureau of Standards