Thursday, February 2, 2012

Eat out at your own risk - Food inspection wing of the Kerala state have stopped mandatory food inspection

Eating out could well be a health hazard in cities and towns of the state these days. With a new Act in place, health officials are in a fix about their roles regarding inspection in the absence of laid-down regulations.As a result, officials of food inspection wing of the state government and local bodies have stopped mandatory inspection and registering formal cases against errant eateries, bakeries and other stores dealing in food item.“Only informal checking is done now,” a food inspector (name withheld on request) of a municipality said. “The old Prevention of Food Adulteration (PFA) Act was repealed on August 5, 2011 and the new Food Safety Standard Act came into force that day. But officials and the public are still being educated on provisions under the new Act, and cases are not being registered (at present)."Mr D. Sreekumar, health officer, Thiruvananthapuram corporation, said: “We have stopped collecting samples (of food) as we do not have a new set of norms to be followed under the new Act. But routine weekly inspections are being carried out by special squads at hotels and restaurants.”Ernakulam District Food Inspector Mr K. Ajith Kumar said under the new Act local bodies have only the power to ensure sanitary conditions at food joints and other outlets. “Food inspectors under the new Food Commissionerate are vested with all other powers," he said. "A decision is yet to be taken on the status of food inspectors under the local bodies.”Mr Ajith Kumar said the new Act is yet to be notified. “So we are not able to file cases," he said. “The tribunal and adjudicating bodies under the Act are yet to be formed.”Health Inspector Mr K. Kunhammed of Kozhikode Corporation said confusion prevails in the absence of routine raids. “Full implementation of the law will get delayed, as training programmes at various levels are being organised. “The Indian Medical Association's Cochin chapter president Dr Abraham Varghese said it is a matter of serious concern if such a situation exists.

1 comment:

W. Home said...

The staggering number of food poisoning accidents globally should be a sign of creating more and strong campaigns that aims for food safety in distribution and consumption in every country. food hygiene training

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