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No, Carrefour Kenya not selling half-price maize after toxin ban

A Facebook post claims the retailer Carrefour Kenya is selling Dola, a banned brand of maize meal, at half price. 

It shows a photo of bags of Dola piled up in a supermarket. A sign next to the pile indicates the price has been reduced from KSh139 to KSh70.

Dear Carrefour Kenya, this maize meal brand has been banned as it contains excess harmful chemicals ‘aflatoxins’ yet you are selling it at half price, DON’T YOU CARE ABOUT KENYANS HEALTH? Or is it that profits are more important than human life?” the post reads.

On 9 November 2019, the Kenya Bureau of Standards (Kebs) announced that it had banned five maize meal brands, including Dola, after it said they had dangerously high levels of aflatoxins

The toxins are produced by fungi on agricultural crops such as maize, and are associated with an increased risk of liver cancer.

Did the retailer really offer dangerous maize meal at half price, after it had been banned? 

Sale from 1 to 3 November

On their official Facebook page, Carrefour Kenya issued a response to the claim.

“Carrefour Kenya would like to inform its customers that the special promotion on Dola flour which was valid from 1 November 2019 to 3 November 2019 was negotiated with the supplier weeks ago without knowing the ongoing investigations from Kebs,” it reads.

The ban was announced on 9 November.

“All maize flour concerned on Kebs today’s press release have been withdrawn from the shelves preventively, as soon as Carrefour was made aware through Retrak on Thursday, 7 November 2019. We also would like to emphasise to our valuable customers that any maize flour concerned which has been purchased at Carrefour can be returned and refunded in any of our branches.”

Retrak is the Retail Trade Association of Kenya.

Carrefour explained how people could get a refund.

“All concerned customers should visit the store of purchase with their receipt to be assisted by the customer-care team on your refund,” the statement reads.

“If the receipt is not available, be prepared to show proof of purchase such as through MPesa or by card payment transaction.” – Grace Gichuhi. 


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