Govt orders testing of edible oils over cancer link
Manzoor-ul-HassanSrinagar, Dec 26:
The government has ordered state-wide testing of edible oils as reports suggest that top brands sell “substandard and adulterated” cooking oil in J&K containing cancer-causing agents.
The State Drug and Food Control Organization has raided all major outlets of edible oils with the aim to identify and punish distributers and manufacturers producing adulterated cooking oil refined from low quality and discarded rapeseeds.
"We have taken open samples for lab testing from nearly 10 top brands. If any of the brands are found adulterated with harmful and substandard oil, their outlets and industrial units will be immediately sealed,” Assistant Commissioner, Food Safety Srinagar, Hilal Ahmad Mir told Rising Kashmir.
He said most of the top oil brands available in the market are under scrutiny including Jammu and Punjab based like P-Mark, Jumbo, Zamindar, V-brand and Noori.
“As of now we have send it to the local Food Analyst for testing. Let’s see how many parameters he can check. We can send the samples to referral laboratories in Kolkata and Ghaziabad for precise testing,” Mir said.
Earlier, edible oils were found containing recycled oils and oils extracted from discarded rapeseeds, which contain highly toxic carcinogenic substance including ‘dropsin’ and ‘aflatoxin.’
Sources said the Food Analyst Lab in Srinagar was unequipped for checking the actual adulterants like Dropsin, accumulation of fluids and mixture of inferior oils.
“The food analyst in Kashmir can only test oil for simple things like color, ash value, turbidity, concentration, iodine value and water,” said an official in the DFCO.