The Government Analyst-Food and Drugs Department is calling on all water processing factories to conform to all the department’s requirements as it relates to the sale and distribution of treated water in five-gallon bottles.
In a missive to the media yesterday, the Director of the Food and Drugs Department, Marlon Cole said that manufacturers and distributors must have a valid license which has been issued by the Department. He said that the licence is an indicator of compliance with Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP’s). Cole stressed that bottles used must be properly cleaned, labelled and sealed. He warned that no funnel should be used to transfer water to bottles prior to sale and/or distribution.
Cole said, “Consumers are advised that when purchasing treated water from various water processing factories, to ensure they are properly labelled and sealed and to report any company that fails to comply with the department’s requirements as it relates to the sale of treated water. Consumers making purchases should also demand to see a valid license issued by the Food and Drugs Department. Again, premises that are involved in the processing, distribution and sale of drinking water, particularly in five-gallon bottles must be in possession of a valid license.”
The statement by the Food and Drugs Department Director would come on the heels of an exercise conducted over a six months period where 87 water samples were collected and submitted for analysis from 29 water processing facilities in the Georgetown and Greater Georgetown areas.
Guyana Standard understands that samples were analyzed for microbiological and chemical parameters to verify compliance with safety requirements. Of the 29 facilities that samples were taken from, 11 were found to be operating without the necessary license from the Department. Further to this, 15 of the 87 samples submitted for analysis were found to be unsatisfactory.
Cole said that processors who insist on operating without a valid License will be asked to cease operation. He said that in the coming months, this exercise will be repeated and a list of approved facilities will be published.