CUTTACK: Buying spices from Malgodown? Think twice as the biggest wholesale mandi of State has now turned into a hub for food adulteration.
Six adulteration units were busted and a huge quantity of adulterated chilli powder, turmeric, coriander and cumin powder seized during joint raids by police and food safety officials of Cuttack Municipal Corporation (CMC) in the last two days.
On Wednesday, Malgodown Police and CMC Food Safety Inspector raided Malgodown and unearthed three spices adulteration units.
Three persons were arrested and 2,025 kg of adulterated chilli powder, 2,860 kg of turmeric powder, 200 kg of coriander powder and 112 kg of cumin powder seized from these units. Besides, low quality raw materials and harmful carcinogenic chemicals used as colourants were found in the units.
Continuing its crackdown, the joint enforcement squad conducted further raids on Thursday and busted three more such units running clandestinely near the Malgodown police outpost.
Besides a seizure of 500 kg of adulterated chilli powder and 1,800 kg of turmeric powder, the squad seized huge quantity of degraded raw materials including 6,250 kg of worm-infested rice, 300 kg of decaying turmeric, 35 kg of low quality chilli, 80 kg of harmful chemicals, three weighing machines, three plastic packet sealing machines and six grinding machines from there.
The officials had to break the lock of the godowns from where the adulteration units had been operating, as the owners fled by bolting the doors before the raids were conducted.
Preliminary investigation revealed that the accused persons manufactured adulterated spices by mixing worm and insect-infected rice along with chemicals and colour essence.
While the units have been sealed, samples of the spices have been sent to laboratory for tests.DCP Prateek Singh said raids on such adulteration units will continue in days to come.