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Gleaner Editors' Forum | Christmas clampdown - BSJ moving to prevent faulty imported products from reaching Jamaican market

Published:Tuesday | December 11, 2018 | 12:00 AMCorey Robinson/Staff Reporter
Wendell Richards, head of the Standards and Compliance Department at the National Compliance Regulation Authority.

Faulty electrical cords and problematic toys are among the main items that the National Compliance Regulation Authority (NCRA) has rejected in recent months in the lead-up to the traditional heavy spending for the Christmas season. NCRA was formed out of the regulatory division of the Bureau of Standards Jamaica (BSJ).

"We started preparing for Christmas months ago, from about October," Wendell Richards, head of the Standards and Compliance Department at the NCRA, told a Gleaner Editors' Forum last Thursday.

"We have seen ordinary electrical cords that wouldn't meet the standard. You have some of these cheap products that the grounding plugs for the electrical cords and Christmas lights are false. So you have to look out for that."

 

TOY EXAMINING LABORATORY

 

He said they do rigorous testing of items coming into the country, removing faulty items from the market.

"Some of the toys coming into the island have been found to have multiple standard breaches, and for that reason, we will be erecting a new laboratory dedicated to examining toys," said executive director of the BSJ, Stephen Wedderburn.

"Currently, through some of the labs, we can test certain aspects, but we do see the need, with toys being such an important thing to children, to have a lab specifically for toys."

He noted that toys are imported heavily throughout the year and not only at Christmas.

The BSJ executive also issued a warning to Jamaicans to read labels carefully before purchasing products.

"It is not always what is cheapest is best; look for quality. That is one of the biggest problems with our consumers. Some persons have illnesses and shouldn't be using certain products. You have to look at the labels," stressed Richards, as he urged Jamaicans to stay away from products that are labelled without English translations.

corey.robinson@gleanerjm.com