Formalin-laced fish seized in Thiruvananthapuram


Stale fish also seized during inspections held simultaneously at 34 markets

A total of 663 kg of formalin-laced fish and 1,122 kg of stale fish were seized from big and small fish markets in the city by the health wing of the city Corporation on Tuesday.

The seized fish was destroyed later.

Special inspections were conducted across 25 health circles covering nearly all the 100 wards of the Corporation.

Inspections were conducted simultaneously at the Palayam, Chala, Kumarichantha, Poonthura, Peroorkada, Pangode, Manacaud, Sreekaryam, Kesavadasapuram, Kazhakuttam, Pappanamcode, Mukkola, and Ulloor markets. Vehicles bringing fish to the wholesale centres were also inspected and formalin-laced fish seized.

No ammonia presence

Significantly, no ammonia was detected in the seized fish.

At the fish at the Palayam market, the presence of formalin was not detected. Formalin though was found in 20 kg of fish brought to the market from outside for cutting, and not for sale, health inspector S.S. Minu said.

The presence of formalin was found in big fish, not small ones. Moreover, it was primarily found in fish brought from other States.

For instance, formalin was found in three cobia (‘modha’), weighing 40 kg, and said to be coming from Gujarat, in the Pangode market, but it was not detected in smaller fish such as seer fish (neymeen).

‘Fisherfolk cooperative’

Mr. Minu said fisherfolk had responded positively to the inspections, saying these were needed to impress the public that the fish had no formalin or ammonia. They also sought inspection of big vehicles transporting fish.

Though fish found in the Palayam market was fresh, lack of sale could prompt the fish to turn stale or be kept in ice which was either laced with ammonia or prepared in unhygienic conditions.

Freezers needed

The seizure of stale fish indicated the need for common freezers at least in the big markets to prevent the fish from going stale, he said.

A team of 24 health inspectors and 40 junior health inspectors led by health supervisors Ajith Kumar and Unni inspected 34 markets on the directions of Mayor K. Sreekumar following complaints from the public.

The Mayor warned of strict action if any irregularities were detected during the inspections.

The inspections at the wholesale fish centres and in vehicles transporting them will continue in days to come.

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Printable version | Jan 22, 2020 10:08:10 PM |

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