HYDERABAD: In the wake of increasing cases of sale of adulterated food items reported in the State, AP government is contemplating setting up of fast-track courts to deal with cases related to food adulteration. The State government has also decided to appoint food safety officers in all the mandals of the State to curb the use of adulterated food items.
It has also decided to make it mandatory for fruit traders to register with the department concerned to keep track of their business. The State government has booked 266 cases and collected fine to a tune of Rs. 1.65 crore in the last three months from traders involved in the sale of adulterated food items.
Disclosing this to reporters after conducting a review meeting with the senior officials of health departments here, on Wednesday, Health Minister Kamineni Srinivas said following High Court direction to the State government to take steps to curb the use of calcium carbide for ripening of fruits, it has decided to strengthening the regulatory structure and work towards effective implementation of Food Safety and Standards Act in the State. “Government is serious about putting an end to the sale of adulterated food items in the State and has decided to implement food safety laws strictly,” he said.
“Officials of food safety department conducted special raids in Vijayawada town in December last and collected 65 samples of ghee, oils, dals and spices and took stringent action against the traders involved in the sale of adulterated items,” he informed.
The Health minister agreed that the government was not able to implement the Food Safety Act effectively due to shortage of staff.
Steps to curb adulteration
- AP Govt contemplating to set up fast track courts to deal with food adulteration cases
- Food safety officers to be appointed in all the mandals to curb the use of adulterated food items
- Govt to make it mandatory for fruit traders to register with the concerned Dept
- 266 cases booked, Rs 1.65 cr fine collected in the last three months from erring traders
- In case of substandard food, fine up to Rs 5 lakh under Food Safety and Standards Act
- Misbranded food, fine up to Rs 3 lakh
- Misleading advertisement, fine up to Rs 10 lakh
- Unsafe food, imprisonment for a period of 6 months to 6 years and fine up to Rs 10 lakh
- In case of unsafe food resulting in death or injury, Rs 5 lakh compensation