Food Safety News – India updates – Dec 16-2016

Non Iodized salt seized

The Food and Drugs Administration on December 7, raided a warehouse located at Mazgaon in South Mumbai and seized 10.5 ton non-iodised salt, since it was being marketed without adhering to norms stipulated under the Food Safety and Standards Act 2006.
Acting on the tip off, the warehouse of M/s Ravji Salt Supplier located at Shivdas Chapsi Road, Mumbai 40009 was raided (December 7) and the salt being sold without iodisation was seized by FDA officials. The four samples have been drawn and sent to laboratory for test, Harish Baijal, Joint Commissioner (Vigilance) said, adding that the common salt should contain 30 Parts Per Million (PPM) at production stage and 10 PPM at consumption stage, as per the FSS Act 2006.
Did you know
The Iodised salt is table salt mixed with a minute amount of various salts of the element iodine. The ingestion of iodine prevents iodine deficiency. Worldwide, iodine deficiency affects about two billion people and is the leading preventable cause of intellectual and developmental disabilities.
The lack of iodine retards growth of children, leads to ailment like squint eye, abortion etc. Iodine is a micronutrient and dietary mineral that is naturally present in the food supply in some regions, especially near sea coasts, but is generally quite rare in the Earth’s crust, since iodine is a ‘heavy’ element and abundance of chemical elements generally declines with greater atomic mass. Where natural levels of iodine in the soil are low and the iodine is not taken up by vegetables, iodine added to salt provides the small but essential amount of iodine needed by human.
No check in Food safety in J & K
 The constitution of a high powered steering committee for effective and smooth implementation of Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006, in Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) is confined to papers only. The state government constituted a high powered steering committee for effective and smooth implementation of Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006, in Jammu and Kashmir (J&K). 
The J&K government had come under sharp criticism for doing little to ensure implementation of Food Safety and Standard Act, 2006. The government had appointed the Chief Secretary of the state as chairman of the steering committee.
Besides chairman, Administrative Secretary Health and Medical Education, Administrative Secretary Rural Development and Panchayati Raj, Administrative Secretary Housing and Urban Development Department, Administrative Secretary Consumer Affairs and Public Distribution Department, Administrative Secretary Law Justice and Parliamentary Affairs, Controller Drug and Food Control Organization and Deputy Commissioner of Food Safety Kashmir/Jammu were appointed its members. The committee according to sources was formed in backdrop of complaints of food adulteration and authorities had failed to curb on it. 
Despite constituting the committee, there seems no change on the ground. “The members of the committee don’t bother to check the working of concerned Deptt,”an official said. The committee has to take a complete review of the ground realities, officers performing the duties under the Act, method of sampling, testing and further follow up action on the basis of misbranded samples. “But nothing such is being done,” the official said. 
The Food Safety and Standards Act of 2006 came into force across the country in August 2011. 
The Act was also to ensure improved quality of food for the consumers and censure misleading claims and advertisement by those in food business. 
Official sources said the government had failed to upgrade the required infrastructure that was obligatory under this Act. They said the Act was not being executed properly in the state by which adulterated food items were being openly sold in markets without any check from the government. 
The Central government had also asked the state government many times to ensure proper implementation of the Act. 
Earlier, the High Court had pulled up the state government for lack of proper mechanism in J&K to check the food adulteration and had stated that authorities concerned have given complete go-bye to the provisions of the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006.

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