Stakeholders consulted on draft sugar standards

GINA, GUYANA, Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Local stakeholders involved in sugar production and its use were today, consulted on the recently drafted regional standard specification for white and brown sugar.

The Guyana National Bureau of standards (GNBS) engaged with these stakeholders to revise the outdated national standards and obtain stakeholders’ recommendations and feedback for a new standard.

A team headed by Guyana was mandated by the CARICOM Regional Organisation for Standards and Quality, CROSQ to develop the draft CARICOM Regional Standard.

Stakeholders present at the consultation

Guyana is represented by Anthony Ross (Chairperson)of the Guyana Manufacturing and Services Association, Malika Jonas of the Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo), Alfred Bhulai of Think Engine ESCo and Institute, and Raymond Ramsaroop of Edward B. Beharry and Company Limited.

These standards will provide a uniform level of acceptance of quality for white and brown sugar manufactured and traded within the Caribbean Community.

Technical Officer of the GNBS, Andrea Mendonca who presented the documents to the stakeholders at the event held at the GNBS, Sophia Exhibition Complex, explained that, “The regional body had agreed to have the standards revised because initially there were three of them; one for brown (sugar), one for white sugar and there was the method of analysis and sampling standard,” Mendonca noted.

The draft CARICOM Regional Standard has been prepared by the Regional Project Team through the CROSQ, to provide a uniform level of acceptance of quality for brown and white sugar manufactured and traded in the CARICOM Community. It is a revision of the Caribbean Community Standards Specification for brown and white sugar.

The draft documents presented specify the requirements for brown sugar intended for direct human consumption and the requirements for dry granulated white sugar packed in containers. It excludes icing sugar.

Andrea Mendonca, Technical Officer II, Guyana National Bureau of Standards

Local stakeholders included in today’s consultation were representatives from GuySuCo, Demerara Distillers Limited and D’Aguiar’s Industries and Holdings (Banks DIH) among other agencies.

Jonas commented that, “Thus far it has been a really enlightening session and there have been recommendations for improvement on the sugar quality throughout CARICOM and some of our recommendations are based on the insoluble solids, and on the moisture or the loss on drying content.”

Representing Demerara Distillers Limited, Keisha Hercules-Fraser said, “I think this is indeed a very good move that we are moving towards putting standards in place from a CARICOM perspective, from a national perspective; it would definitely ensure that we have a good quality moving forward.”

GNBS’ officer, Mendonca added that, “there has been a lot of change in technology, scientific evidence and the way in which we do things, and so the need was that we should have the standards revised.”

Comments and recommendations gathered from today’s consultation will be forwarded to the regional project team for revision, along with other recommendations from other member states. This will facilitate the speedy compilation and implementation of the updated CARICOM sugar specification standards.

By: Delicia Haynes