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18 August, 2015 00:00 00 AM
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the obvious question that cannot help but arise is : why people in general should find themselves in a position where they have no choice but to consume these highly hazardous so called foodstuffs day after day ? There has to be complete and sustainable eradication of the menace now posed by adulterated foods

Stop rampant adulteration of food items

That 40 per cent rate of adulteration on an average has been detected  in  30 food items and hundred per cent adulteration in 13 items,  comes as a highly worrying piece of information. A leading vernacular  daily  made it the lead news in its front page  yesterday. According to the Institute of Public Health (IPH)  sources, 5,396 samples of 43 food items collected from different places of the country from January to December last year were sent to the Public Health Laboratory run by IPH. Of them 2,147 were found dangerously adulterated. The 13 hundred per cent adulterated food items are honey, sweetmeat, ghee, rosogolla, dalda, curd, vermicelli, curdle, sweet made of curdle, juice and chutney. The findings are  alarming to say the least.
Although these adulterated food items have been identified, there is no visible initiative  noted to stop the selling of the same.  Such findings have been intermittent in recent years. People also see from media focuses the taking of law enforcement actions against such adulteration. But the actions are few in number compared to the enormity of the offences. So, the adulteration activities go on like business as usual  impacting adversely on the health of a great many number of people on a regular basis.
  What is truly concern raising  is that  soyabean oil used by 90 per cent people of the country daily for cooking food items  was found  78 per cent adulterated in the latest IPH conducted test. The rates of adulteration in other oils found by the test are as follows :   mustard oil 56 per cent, palm oil 32 per cent, coconut oil 25 per cent. Besides, rate of adulteration in pepper dust is 60 per cent, cumin dust 18 per cent, turmeric dust 31 per cent, coriander  dust 53 per cent, ata 11 per cent, fine ata 9 per cent, suji 27 per cent, biscuit 46 per cent, bason 52 per cent and vermicelli 82 per cent. On the other hand,  the rate of adulteration in sugar is 5 per cent, salt 36 per cent, tea dust 10 per cent, molasses 57 per cent, date molasses 25 per cent, mug pulses 9 per cent, chutney 83 per cent and cake 70 per cent.
     Doctors say that there is a close relationship between regular consumption of these adulterated food items  and various gastro-intestinal diseases. Such consumption may  also lead to cardiac disorders, liver and kidney failures, high blood pressure, diabetes and even cancer.
    The obvious question that cannot help but arise is : why people in general
should find themselves in a position where they have no choice but to consume these highly hazardous so called foodstuffs day after day ?  There has to be complete and sustainable  eradication of the menace now posed by adulterated foods. People in the country today remain very sensitized by what awful things they are forced to eat as foods. But there is no sign that they would be delivered in the near future from such adulterated foods through a well conceived and executed programme by the authorities who should be concerned.
   Food adulteration is a major threat to public health.  It is more than high time to address the issue very  seriously and uncompromisingly by the government.

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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