May 20, 2014

25% food items unsafe, says FDA report

PUNE: Unsafe and below standard food products continue to being sold and purchased in Pune. According to a latest report of the Food and Drugs Administration (FDA), about 25% of the food items are either unsafe or as per the standards set by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI).
Between April 2013 and March 2014, the officials drew 1,996 food samples to check whether they are fit for consumption and meet all the parameters of standards. Of all the samples, 131 were found to be unsafe and 380 failed to meet the standard criteria.
"As part of our routine inspection, we drew 1,996 samples, including edible oil, milk, jaggery, sugar boiled confectionery, chilly powder and other grocery items for testing . Of them, 511 samples failed on safety and standard tests," said Shashikant Kekare, joint commissioner (food) of FDA, Pune. The FDA officials have also filed criminal cases against 210 food manufacturers for selling unsafe food items.
FDA has started allocating licences and registrations to food business operators to bring them under its monitoring radar. Food business operators with an annual turnover of above Rs 12 lakh must possess a licence and those who earn less than Rs 12 lakh a year must get a registration certificate, as per the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006.
"So far, we have covered 59% of the operators doing food businesses in Pune. We have given licences to 34,942 operators and registration to 1,51,058 of them," Kekare said.

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