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Certification call to restore readymix confidence

News

UK CEMENT producers could be forced to introduce independent third party certification of cement alkali levels at all UK works, it emerged this week.

Lafarge has admitted that the move may be necessary to restore credibility of cement producers after 'rogue employees' at its Westbury works falsifi ed alkali figures for two years.

Customers are still struggling to fi nd the exact location of the substandard cement (News last week).

In a statement issued on Monday Lafarge managing director Jean-Francois Sautin said: 'We recognise that we have to address all of our (readymix concrete) customers' questions to merit their continued confidence, and extend this to have the construction industry and the public fully trusting our products.

'Our customers have made clear a wish to see further check testing for alkali levels by independent third parties and we will be working with our trade association as we develop this in the coming weeks, ' he added.

European legislation dictates that all cement must carry a CE mark to signal compliance with the relevant harmonised standard. Additional certification is only allowed if it adds vital information for the customer, so the BSI Kitemark could return.

The British Cement Association (BCA) play a lead role in deciding how far the additional certifi cation should go and how many companies should be involved.

BCA external affairs director Martin Casey said additional certifi ation might be to the benefi of all. 'Confidence has been undermined and people throughout the UK may need reassurance, ' he said.

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