Kerala

Tough measures to ensure food safety

Raids to held in hotels, fish markets, juice parlours, bakeries in Kollam

In a bid to find eateries that violate food safety and hygiene norms, the district administration will launch an intensive drive in association with Civil Supplies, Health, Food Safety and Legal Metrology departments. Joint raids will be held in various parts of the district before Onam and stringent action will be taken against those flouting rules.

District Collector B. Abdul Nasar has instructed the food safety officials to ensure the quality of all beverages sold by roadside vendors, including full jar soda, an item that turned very popular recently.

Since there has been complaints that unhygienic water and soda containing bleaching powder are being used for preparing the drink, inspections will be conducted in all outlets.

Strips to detect formalin

The district administration will also make available strips to check the presence of formalin, ammonia and other chemicals in fish. Recently the officials had seized huge volumes of formalin-laced pearl spot (karimeen) from some outlets in the city. Using the strip developed by Central Institute of Fisheries Technology (CIFT), customers can easily check the quality of the fish.

Officials said finding chemical contamination using the white-coloured strips and the liquid that comes with it is easy. The strips should be scrubbed on the fish first and if the colour changes after the liquid is added, it shows the presence of chemicals.

The strip, previously used by enforcement agencies during inspections, is currently available in market.

Lab tests

“As part of the drive, inspections will be held in hotels, fish markets, juice parlours, bakeries and ‘borma’ units. Samples will be collected from all places for lab tests and stringent action will be taken against those who violate food safety norms,” said the Collector speaking at the Food Advisory Committee meeting held in Kollam collectorate.

He added that action will be taken against vegetable vendors who charge extra and shops for not exhibiting rates.

The committee also examined the reports on chapatti packets without expiry date, low-quality cooking oil, food products made using artificial colour and charging more for bottled water.

District Civil Supplies officer Anil Raj, Food Safety Assistant Commissioner K.V. Shibu, Legal Metrology assistant controller Jayachandran and Food Advisory Committee members attended the meeting.

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Printable version | Jun 4, 2020 2:51:29 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/tough-measures-to-ensure-food-safety/article28526328.ece

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