Control of Pre-packaged Products in Cape Verde

SINMETRO collaborates with IGQPI.

The SINMETRO team collaborates with IGQPI (Cape Verde Institute for Quality Management and Intellectual Property) on the implementation of metrological control of pre-packaged products, in the following areas: 

  • Review and update of legal diplomas, according to OIML (International Organization of Legal Metrology) recommendation R87 – 2016.
  • Elaboration of technical procedures.
  • Digitization of the verification process through the ACCEPT Legal web platform.
  • Training of technicians to perform the different types of pre-packaged metrological verification tests and interpretation of the results.
  • Development of workshops, seminars and training actions for companies in the pre-packaged products sector.

Mission to Cape Verde – Praia – Santiago Island (June 6th to 11th, 2021).

We arrived on June 6th, at 11 am, at Nelson Mandela Airport in Praia, Santiago Island, Cape Verde. We were welcomed by Mr. Jorge, IGQPI driver, who dropped us off at the Hotel Santa Maria, right in the historic center of Praia. The colonial architecture is evident and stands out along the streets. Here you will find the Matriz Church, the City Hall of Praia, the Presidential Palace, which is the official residence of the President of Cape Verde, and the statue of the navigator Diogo Gomes.

It was 5:45 am, and we were already out of the hotel, to start our morning run, which lasted about half an hour, to the beach “Quebra Canela”. Because of the Covid-19 Pandemic, access to the beaches is conditioned to the period from 6 am to 8 pm. We experienced swimming in warm waters, characteristic of the central region of the ocean circulation in line with the Caribbean Sea and the West African coast.

About three hours later, we started the first meeting with the IGQPI team, which was attended by the President of the Institute, Enger Ana Paula Spencer, the executive administrator, Enger Joana Flor, the Responsible for Metrology, Enger José Carvalho, and the Metrology and Communication teams.

After this meeting to welcome and get to know the Institute’s areas of activity, we made the first field visit. We went to the Moave company, which packs cereal, sugar and other products, and to the Yogurel company, which makes yogurts. In general terms, we were in the presence of modern and well-equipped units that had to be trained to carry out metrological control.

Visit to Moave and Yogurel companies.

The 8th of June was spent at the IGQPI headquarters training its team for field verifications and for the use of the ACCEPT Legal platform, which the SINMETRO team developed from scratch to digitize the management process of the Pre- packaged Metrological Control, from the request of an applicant to the issuance of the metrological verification test report.

On the morning of the 9th, we continued the process of training the team, including carrying out demonstrative tests at the IGQPI. In the afternoon, we held a workshop on Pre-packaged Metrological Control products, which was attended by 60 participants and, as a result, was reported by national television and the local press, available on inforpress.

In the last days, the 10th and 11th, we visited Enacol and Tecnicil so that the IGQPI team could learn about the packaging processes of these gas and water packaging companies, juices, soft drinks, milk and yogurts, respectively, and held the closure meeting at the IGQPI, with an overview of the mission and the definition of the next steps.

According to the IGQPI, the overall assessment of the mission was “very positive” and, therefore, we are convinced that it is “the beginning of a fruitful partnership”. This set of activities allowed: 

    1. To train professionals in the sector of pre-packaged products to comply with the legal requirements of metrological control, recently approved in Cape Verde.
    2. Raise awareness of national packagers and producers, as well as exporting companies, of the approved technical requirements, with the ultimate aim of protecting Cape Verde consumers and companies.
    3. Assist the IGQPI for an annual metrological verification of the packages quantity through the ACCEPT Legal platform.
    4. Schedule a benchmarking session with the participation of Portuguese packaging companies, to share how they implemented pre-packaged quantity control.

Visit to Enacol and Tecnicil companies.

On the afternoon of the last day, the IGQPI team took us to visit Cidade Velha, considered a UNESCO world heritage site. He provided us with a guided tour of the fort, which dates from the 16th century, and in which the Portuguese protected the island of Santiago from the onslaught of French and Dutch corsairs and other sea pirates. From there you can see the relief of the island, with the brown of the mountains, the green of the banana trees, mango trees and calabash trees, and the blue of the sea

The characteristic warmth of Cape Verde is highlighted in the warm, uninterrupted way of the people throughout our stay on the island. Going to Cape Verde and the city of Praia is to experience the daily life of the population and have a gastronomic experience rich in flavors, from neighborhood cafeterias to the most renowned restaurants. We highlight the fried corn cakes, Katxupa, grilled tuna, sautéed vegetables, mangoes, bananas and calabash juice.

Visiting the island of Santiago is also experiencing the daily constraints of the population, namely the scarcity of water, promoted by intense droughts over the years. It rains once or twice a year and therefore water is the island’s most precious asset.

It is with a feeling of mission accomplished, gratitude and humility that we return from Cape Verde.