JIS News

Story Highlights

  • The Bureau of Standards Jamaica (BSJ) has been lauded for rendering exemplary and distinguished service over the past 50 years.
  • “In your five-decade history, you have been an outstanding organisation, contributing significantly to standards at the national, regional and international levels,” Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, Dermon Spence, said.
  • He was speaking at the BSJ’s 50th anniversary celebrations launch, at the agency’s Winchester Road head office, in St. Andrew, on Monday (July 15).

The Bureau of Standards Jamaica (BSJ) has been lauded for rendering exemplary and distinguished service over the past 50 years.

“In your five-decade history, you have been an outstanding organisation, contributing significantly to standards at the national, regional and international levels,” Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, Dermon Spence, said.

He was speaking at the BSJ’s 50th anniversary celebrations launch, at the agency’s Winchester Road head office, in St. Andrew, on Monday (July 15).

Noting that 50 years for any organisation “is truly a significant milestone,” Mr. Spence said it is an opportune time for the BSJ to reflect on the journey thus far, as it looks ahead to continue its work.

The Permanent Secretary, who described the BSJ’s engagements over the years as impactful, said these have been “felt by all Jamaicans.”

These persons, he added, include consumers, manufacturing and retail industries and the private and public sectors.

Mr. Spence assured that quality and standards remain “matters of serious national concern” for the Ministry and, by extension, the Government.

Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, Dermon Spence (right), listens to Executive Director of the Bureau of Standards Jamaica (BSJ), Hopeton Heron, during the launch of the BSJ’s 50th anniversary celebrations on Monday (July 15). The event was held at the Bureau’s Winchester Road head office in St. Andrew.

 

In this regard, he said a National Quality Infrastructure (NQI) Policy has been developed to provide direction and guidelines to the various activities related to quality infrastructure.

“We will continue the efforts to safeguard the interests of both the producer and consumer with the appropriate legislative framework, and will remain committed to achieving international accord on all technical matters relating to the exchange of goods and services between one nation and another, which is the ultimate goal of standardisation,” Mr. Spence said.

Noting that the Ministry “remains grateful” for the BSJ’s commitment to standardisation and quality, Mr. Spence said “we pledge to continue to work with you as we strive to build a better Jamaica”.

For his part, Chairman of the BSJ’s Standards Council, Senator Matthew Samuda, highlighted the passion of the agency’s management and staff, and policymakers, in driving the Bureau’s work.

This, he noted, has been most evident in the intense advocacy and strong unyielding commitment by the various persons to this end.

“This passion has served the Bureau well in the almost three decades of service given by the Rev. Dr. Artnel Henry, who served as the first Executive Director from 1973 up to 2000. His

commitment to this fledgling scientific organisation, which certainly must be acknowledged and commended, included overseeing the expansion of the Bureau’s technical capacity and buildingn over the years,” Senator Samuda said.

The Chairman said this eventually led to the International Organization of Standardisation (ISO) ratifying the Bureau, before any other similar organisation within the Caribbean.

“This, undoubtedly, underscores the sentiment that an organisation is only as good as its people, who live and work in it… and certainly we can say that at 50, the Bureau of Standards Jamaica is no fledgling scientific organisation,” he added.

Meanwhile, BSJ Executive Director, Hopeton Heron, said 50 years of dedicated service is a major milestone for the organisation.

Executive Director of the Bureau of Standards Jamaica (BSJ), Hopeton Heron (centre), converses with Chief Technical Director in the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, Monique Gibbs (left), during Monday’s (July 15) launch of the BSJ’s 50th anniversary celebrations. The event was held at the Bureau’s Winchester Road head office in St. Andrew. At right is Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Dermon Spence.

 

“We are maturing, having gained solid experience… but also recognising that there are many more opportunities for advancing as we grow older by keeping up with the advancement in technology,” he said.

Mr. Heron also paid tribute the BSJ’s pioneers “who had the vision to create the organisation.”

Several commemorative activities are slated to be held over the next 12 months, including an exhibition, staff awards function, and an internship programme for students.

The Bureau of Standards Jamaica, an agency of the Industry Ministry, was established in 1969 to promote and encourage the maintenance of standardisation in relation to commodities, processes and practices.