Health Services


HARARE-- Zimbabwe's Environmental Management Authority (EMA) has confiscated at least 400,000 kaylite containers, known as Expanded Polystyrene Foam (EPS), since December last year, as it moves to remove the banned plastic packaging from the surroundings.

Last year, the Zimbabwe government started implementing Statutory Instrument 84 of 2012 which banned the use of kaylites in the food industry.

Initially the government had given kaylite manufacturers, distributors and users up June 30, 2016 to switch to alternative packaging and mop up EPS but delayed implementation to June last year, before it then gave a

three-month moratorium from July the same year to clear stocks, which it later revoked.

When it effected the ban, EMA said the food containers were exposing consumers to cancer as well as clogging the country's drainage and sewer systems.

EMA spokesperson Steady Kangata said Wednesday that awareness campaigns which it conducted played a pivotal role in ensuring compliance with the government directive to stop use of the banned product.

In terms of the kaylites confiscation in-situ, the figure is about 400,000 and that is from December 2017, he said. The number is coming down since people are now aware of the hazards associated with the product.

Kangata said EMA was however aware of hot spots particularly in the high density suburb of Mbare where kaylites were still rampant use of kaylites and was taking measures to ensure they were eliminated with

those caught caught being fined 300 US dollars.

He applauded stakeholders working with EMA in ensuring an end to the use of the banned packaging material. Most retailers in Zimbabwe have since migrated from using kaylites to paper.