Carried out simultaneously by four teams, the raids brought to light several issues such as poor hygiene standards and excessive usage of several chemicals.

Vijayawada ice cream units raided by food safety officials Concern over chemical usageImages: By arrangment
news Food sagety Wednesday, May 23, 2018 - 16:41

In a move to control food adulteration and malpractices in ice cream manufacturing units across Vijayawada and Krishna district in Andhra Pradesh, Food Safety and Vigilance officials carried out coordinated raids in as many as eight units.

The raids, which were carried out simultaneously by four teams, brought to light several issues such as poor hygiene standards and excessive usage of several chemicals.

According to officials, traders are also operating the units without obtaining necessary permissions and manufacturing the ice cream in unhygienic conditions with least regard for public health safety.

The raids were overseen by Regional Vigilance and Enforcement Officer M Ravindranath Babu, DSP K Vijay Paul and Assistant Food Controller N Purnachandra Rao.

Speaking to TNM, Purnachandra said, “In our raids, we found several issues such as unhygienic units and non-approved milk powder (without ISI mark); in some units, we also found an impermissible number of synthetic colours and flavours.”

The officer also said that chemicals like sulphate need to be used in a controlled manner and under hygienic conditions.

While issuing a notice to the managements of the ice cream units, officials also took samples from as many as eight units and sent them to the lab for further examination.

Purnachandra also told TNM, “It may take as many as 20 days to get the report on the samples we sent. If it is found that they’re breaking the rules, legal action will be taken against all of them and their licenses will be suspended.”

Officials said that such raids will continue at regular intervals.

However, this is not the first such incident this month that has raised concern over food safety.

Earlier this month, officials conducted raids in several fruit markets in Krishna district and seized over 1,000 sachets of ethylene powder that were being used to artificially ripen mangoes.

While the state government provides the farmers and traders with ethylene chambers in large markets where they can ripen their fruits in a less harmful way, the sachets are far more harmful as the traders often do not regulate the quantity of the gas being released.

Show us some love and support our journalism by becoming a TNM Member - Click here.