FSSAI urges state enforcement agencies to review pending cases against FBOs
Adulteration check: FDA keeps eye on milk products, namkeen
Since Ganesh Chaturthi the FDA has taken nearly 100 samples of sweets, edible oil, namkeen and spices. Out of total samples sent for laboratory testing in state capital, report of 30 samples has come. 10 samples were found to be misbranded, while six samples were of sub-standard quality.
Food safety officer, Manish Swami said, “During Ganesh Chaturthi, we took samples of sweets from shops near prominent city temples. We had also carried out inspections at Namkeen manufacturing units in industrial areas nearby city. Every week, teams conduct surprise inspection at least on three days. During this season, we have taken samples from 40 small-big units.”
Swami also said that we will continue conducting surprise inspection especially on mawa sweets, namkeen, chocolates and gift packs shops. When asked about whether the delay in sampling and testing differ the result or not, Swami said, “Though the result of the samples takes time, collection of samples is a sign enough to make the seller conscious about food quality. Moreover, we do not have laboratory in Indore so we are dependent on Bhopal lab.”
FDA officials are keeping a close watch on sweets, milk products and namkeen, which the officials say, are the main food items that are found adulterated. “From the lab reports that have come in the past, it has come to surface that non-food colour is being used in sweets. City residents should try and avoid coloured sweets, especially the deep pink ones, which might be adulterated,” advised Swami. Customers can file complaints related to food adulteration with the department on the condition of anonymity too.
It should be taken to note that if any city resident is apprehensive about a certain food item that he or she has already purchased, then he can send it for testing to the food department personally.
State govt’s move on mid-day meal likely to save time and will provide relief to teachers.
JAIPUR: State education department is making a strong pitch for introduction of pre-packaged meals as part of the mid-day meal (MDM) scheme in government schools in the desert state to address the issue of nutritional balance in the diet for children. The idea was mentioned in the last budget speech of CM Vasundhara Raje as well.
Rajasthan government’s move derived from the plan to serve hygienic, pre-packaged food, hot and fresh. According to sources such a move would save the preparation time and thereby providing much relief to the teachers. Besides, it would eliminate complaints regarding the quality of the food supplied to the children. Education department has written to the Union Human Resources Development ministry in this regard. According to sources the proposal of the Rajasthan government is under examination of the Union HRD ministry which requires an amendment to the MDM rules 2015.
The mid-day meal which is served in primary and upper primary schools across the government schools in the nation has to be “hot-cooked meal” as per the MDM rules.
The Rajasthan government pointed out that the pre-cooked meal will be more hygienic, easy to store and cook, and still can be served hot. It was also argued that it will give students opportunities to eat different meals on everyday which will increase the popularity of the scheme.
Besides it was also argued that the pre-cooked meals can keep a balance on nutritional standards which will help students to stay healthy.
However, some state chief ministers and other union ministers are said to be not in favour of allowing pre-cooked meals.
According to a research study published in MDM Scheme official website, the programme has helped improve attendance and enrolment of children, particularly girls apart from addressing the issue of malnutrition among children.
Ahead of Diwali, FSDA seizes 8,500 kg spurious ghee
AGRA: Food Safety and Drug Administration (FSDA) on Thursday seized 8500 kg of spurious ghee from a factory in Gokul Nagar area here. Officials were amazed at the scale at which the illegal activity was going on in the factory, Shri Bihari Ji Food Industries.
FSDA designated officer Vineet Kumar said, “Agra vendors have created a new recipe for preparing ghee using vanaspati, refined soya bean oil and essence. A raid was conducted at Shri Bihari Ji Food Industries after a tip-off. Raids would intensify in coming day and several squads have been formed for this purpose.”
He added that around 4000 Kg of vanaspati, 3000 litre refined soya bean oil, besides 1,525 kg of prepared ghee were seized in total. The shop is owned by one Anil Agarwal, resident Langde ki chowki.
Notably, UP chief secretary had recently informed the state government that Western UP is a hub for manufacturing adulterated food materials like synthetic milk and spurious edible oils.
Just last month, around 7500 litres of pungent-smelling adulterated cooking oil was seized by team of Food Safety and Drug Administration (FSDA) from Jagner Road, in Agra. The team of FSDA has confiscated the adulterated oil bearing the name of ‘Delight Plus Mustard Oil’ from the ‘Agra Agro Company’ and has sent the samples for the testing in laboratory.
Prior to that in August, more than 6000 liters of pungent smelling adulterated edible/cooking oil were seized. A team of nine members of FSDA had conducted a surprise raid at a private (Maa Gauri Oil) plant/godown in Barauli Ahir of Shamshabad road and found large quantity of adulterated cooking oil being dispatched to different districts such as Mathura, Firozabad, Etah, Agra and others.