‘Food Mafia’ poses threat

‘Food Mafia’ poses threat

The recent report about the food adulteration submitted by the Food Safety Commissioner has revealed that of 2,371 food samples which were lifted from the open market 637 samples were found to be of substandard quality.
The food adulteration during the past few years has emerged as a major challenge for the authorities as the adulterated food has made inroads in the Valley. The health experts have already sounded a caution about Kashmir heading towards an epidemic due to substandard food items being sold in the open markets.
According to the recent data 82,305 food establishments exist in the state. The common complaint against the food outlets is that they use artificial colours and the artificial tastemakers to sell the food. The artificial colours and tastemakers, according to the food experts, are the major cause for the cancer cases in the Valley.
On the other hand the food items, including oil, spices and other edibles too have come under scanner. There are reports that these items too are emerging as a threat for the common people as their quality is not that good.
Recently Food Safety Commissioner informed the Jammu and Kashmir High Court that it published 10 advisories in local print media for generating awareness among masses with regard to food safety at home, food safety for flood-affected areas, food colours, food safety through refrigeration, prohibition of newspapers as food packaging material, advisory on junk foods, advisory on water and edible ice, advisory on healthy lifestyles, and general advisories in do’s and don’ts.
But the million dollar question is that are authorities doing enough to prevent the markets in Kashmir from getting flooded by the adulterated food items. If the government really wants to save the people from eating and drinking poison then it would have to act and frame stringent rules to keep the “Food Mafia” at bay.