Surprise checks at stalls over ‘fuming’ fish curry
Action follows continued boiling of mackerel curry cooked at a house in Muvattupuzha; samples sent for examination
Taking serious note of an “ever boiling” fish curry, officials of the Food Safety Department conducted surprise checks at fish stalls in and around Muvattupuzha town.
Officials said the inspection, which began on Tuesday evening, went on till Wednesday morning. The samples collected from fish markets have been sent to the Regional Analytical Laboratory at Kakkanad for a detailed examination.
“Samples of the fish curry as well as its ingredients have been sent to the lab, and the first set of results is expected in two days,” said Abdul Majeed P.A, Circle Food Safety Officer, Ernakulam.
Preliminary investigations attributed the fumes emanating from the dish to the presence of a chemical substance.
“Hydrogen peroxide, ammonia, and formalin are some of the commonly used chemicals to preserve fish stocks, especially while they are transported. However, we are yet to confirm whether any of these chemicals caused this boiling phenomenon until the examination is over,” the official held.
The incident in question pertains to the continued fuming of mackerel curry, which was cooked at the house of one Salim at Paipra near Muvattupuzha.
According to reports, the dish continued to fume even after two days of making it.
The fish was purchased from a local stall at Muvattupuzha.
Traders deny charge
Incidentally, the Food Safety Department had earlier sounded alert on the possibility of fish wholesalers in neighbouring States treating fish using formalin to enhance its shelf life. The traders, however, have denied the charge, saying the stocks were being sent in airtight ice containers, which keep the fish fresh for up to a week.
Meanwhile, sources said since the stocks were being brought from States as far as Andhra Pradesh, it was impossible to arrest decomposition without using a preservative.
Action follows continued boiling of mackerel curry cooked at a house in Muvattupuzha