The Central Food Technological Research Institute (CFTRI) on Thursday threw open its doors to street vendors of Mysuru to share its expertise on making street food safe and hygienic.
In its bid to impart scientific knowledge and skill to ensure clean, safe, nutritious and affordable street food here, the scientists from the premier food lab held a workshop and demonstrated practices that can be adopted in street food vending.
Over 100 street food vendors took part in the workshop organised jointly by the Mysuru City Corporation (MCC) and the Mysuru Street Vendors’ Association. The programme was aimed to benefit both street vendors and consumers.
Inaugurating the workshop ‘ensuring safe street food in India’s cleanest city’, MCC Commissioner C.G. Betsurmath said the MCC had identified hawking and non-hawking zones in the city, and street food vending in the city’s core areas had been restricted.
Announcing that the MCC would soon come out with a new street food vending model, the Commissioner asked street vendors operating in non-core areas to ensure safe and hygienic food, and clean vending spots. He said Mysuru had bagged the cleanest city tag for the second time in a row and vendors had the responsibility of keeping the city clean with proper waste disposal system. They should remember that Mysuru is a tourist city and they can play a key role in serving them clean, and safe food.
Now that the plastic ban had come into force in Mysuru, the MCC commissioner asked the vendors to comply with the new plastic rule and warned of action if they flouted the norm.
In his address, CFTRI director Ram Rajashekaran said street vendors were educated on food safety aspects. The motive behind the workshop was to train the trainer, create awareness and disseminate basic and essential knowledge to street vendors.
Despite ensuring tasty, affordable and diverse food to the consumers, street food vendors are often unaware of the best hygienic practices. “We educated them on how to regulate waste generation in their business and adopt eco-friendly models in their business in the wake of the plastic ban,” he said.
There were presentations on hygienic practices and FSSAI regulations for street vendors; design aspects for making a model street vending cart; MCC initiatives for street vendors and in the end there was an interactive session between scientists and street vendors.
On the occasion, AcSIR students released findings of a survey on the status of street food in Mysuru. The street vendors received a kit containing an apron, cap and gloves and food safety information book.