NATIONAL NEWS - Waste management experts are positive over Tiger Brands’ promise to follow strict guidelines in ensuring that Enterprise food products which may contain traces of listeriosis are safely disposed of.
With the large number of products which need disposing of and incinerating, Dr Johan Schoonraad, EnviroServ’s technical director, said there was no cause for panic and “if people follow the procedure to return their products to the retailer that they bought it from, the disposal process will be dealt with correctly”.
Tiger Brands told The Citizen yesterday recalled products would be safely removed and handled according to National Consumer Commission (NCC) guidelines and required authorities.
“Tiger Brands will take full accountability for this. We are managing the disposal through our current channels and in accordance with the NCC’s guidelines for the safe disposal of these products and compliance certification,” it said.
Thabang Sekete, business development manager at Buhle Waste, said: “In terms of the disposal, there will be challenges. This is a coordinated effort that involves individuals as well as multiple organisations and government departments.
“It requires each stakeholder to play its role – from the households, to the retailers, to the factories, to the waste industry, the government and the media.
“We all need to inform people of how best to deal with this case. A unified effort is required to ensure the success of this operation.
“In my professional opinion, the waste disposal will ultimately be done successfully. There is sufficient capacity from the waste industry in terms of treating and disposing all of the contaminated products.”
Averda South Africa’s Johan van den Berg said provided products contaminated with listeria were managed correctly, they could be safely disposed of.
Institute of Waste Management of Southern Africa president Professor Suzan Oelofse said there were two safe options that could be applied when dealing with the disposal.
The first option, she said, would be the use of incinerators at facilities where “material is combusted at temperatures in excess of 850° C”.
The second option would be the treatment of the waste with lime followed by its disposal in a “duly authorised landfill site in a trench of at least 1.5 metres deep that is immediately covered”.
After the safe disposal of the waste, the operator of the waste facility would issue a safe disposal certificate to the factory which serves as proof that the waste has been disposed of in accordance to government regulations on condemned food.