PAINT SPECIFICATIONS

Kebs approves new standards to eradicate toxicity in paints

Exposure to heavy metals has been proved to lead to negative health impacts

In Summary

• KEBS established general and specific requirements for paints.

• Njiraini said the standards had been developed in collaboration with the stakeholders

Kebs managing director Benard Njiraini.
Kebs managing director Benard Njiraini.
Image: COURTESY

Kenya Bureau of Standards has approved five new standards that will eradicate toxicity in paints.

KEBS established general and specific requirements for paints that address the issues of toxicity levels that have an impact on human health and the environment.

The maximum permissible content of heavy metals such as lead, arsenic, volatile organic compound occurring as contaminants from raw materials used in the manufacture of paints, have been specified.

Exposure to heavy metals has been proved to have negative health impacts on the respiratory system, damages cardiovascular and gastrointestinal tissue and interferes with various physiological and biochemical processes.

In the long term, some lead to behavioural problems as they negatively impact neurodevelopment in children.

KEBS Managing Director Bernard Njiraini said the standards had been developed in collaboration with the stakeholders in line with international best practices.

"Subsequently, this will ensure that paints are safe and provide required protection of the environment," Njiraini said.

On Wednesday, KEBS approved two new standards that will guide quality and safety requirements for hermetic bags for the storage of grains.

Through the new standards, KEBS has addressed the use of hermetic storage for the storage of dried food commodities, derived products and seeds without the use of pesticides as a preservative.

Hermetic bags are air-tight bags that prevent air or water from getting into the cereals stored in them.

The bags preserve the contents while restricting the existence of cereal pests by depleting the oxygen supply. 

Requirements for the outer bag and hermetic liner include and are not limited to breaking force of the sacking, water vapour transmission rate, oxygen transmission rate, packaging and labelling, among others.