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10 July, 2019 00:00 00 AM
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Safety of Pasteurised milk

All brands safe, says govt

DU Prof gets legal notice for publishing report
SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT, Dhaka

The government yesterday urged people to consume all branded liquid milk, including the milk produced by Milk Vita, Aarong and Pran, without any hesitation. It has also decided to take legal action against Dhaka University Prof. ABM Faruk of the Bio-medical Research Centre and Pharmaceutical Faculty for flouting the research protocol.

Kazi Wasi Uddin, additional secretary of the fisheries and livestock ministry, confirmed this while addressing a seminar titled ‘Safe liquid milk production: protection of local dairy farms and imperatives’ at the city’s livestock department yesterday.

“A vested quarter is involved in a conspiracy to destroy the country's dairy industry. The DU professor has published his research report on liquid milk after being influenced by someone of this clique,” he said.

A group of “rogues” have been working to destroy the dairy farms across the country, he claimed.

There is hardly any harmful ingredient in liquid milk, including the milk produced by Milk Vita, Aarong and Pran, he added.

On July 2, Prof. ABM Faruk made public a research report on the pasteurised milk produced by seven companies at a press conference.

He claimed that they found the presence of antibiotics and three types of detergents in the tested samples.

After testing seven samples of widely sold pasteurised milk

and three samples of unpasteurised milk, the Pharmacy Faculty and Biomedical Research Centre in a report said the researchers found detergent and antibiotics in packaged milk available in kitchen markets and grocery shops.

 “We have already served a show-cause notice to Prof. ABM Faruk. If he fails to reply within seven days, the ministry will take legal action against him for violating the research protocol,” Wasi Uddin said.

 Pointing at the DU professor, the additional secretary said some ethics must be followed before disclosing any research report to the media. “Faruk’s way of dealing with the matter was wrong. Has he published your report in any peer-reviewed journal? The ministry will take action if he fails to reply within seven days,” he added.

 It would not be possible to expand the dairy farm industry if the private sector does not come forward, he observed.

 

“Milk is heaven’s ambrosia. We are urging everyone to drink liquid milk every day. No farmer would like to adulterate his milk. It’s a propaganda of some vested quarters to destroy the dairy farm industry,” Wasi Uddin said.

 “The government is contemplating to feed 1.5 crore children. We are thinking of providing one cup of milk to each of them. The government has also taken up a milk feeding programme for children in 700 schools,” he added.

  Wasi Uddin also said that the livestock department is relentlessly working to create awareness among dairy farmers to produce safe milk by using modern technology in scientific ways. Besides, the produced milk is being processed and marketed after ensuring quality by the state-owned BSTI, he added.

 “There’s no doubt about the milk’s quality as it is marketed after being approved by BSTI through proper testing,” Wasi Uddin said.

 He said the Bangladesh food safety authority, BCSIR, and several other organisations also conducted random tests to check the milk quality.

 The report published by Prof. ABM Faruk and Dr Shahnila Ferdous has created a negative impact among the people, he noted.

 Earlier, BSTI had tested the top 14 brands of liquid milk available in the markets, but did not find any harmful metals. That report would also be submitted to the High Court, the additional secretary said.

When contacted, Prof. ABM Faruk said: “I’ve received a legal notice and will reply within the stipulated time.”

 He also dismissed the allegation that his research was being influenced by someone.

 “We have conducted and disclosed the report abiding by all research protocols. It will need six months to publish the report in a journal,” he said in reply to a query.

 He said that instead of the nine parameters considered by BSTI, the DU team conducted tests on 19 parameters of the liquid milk samples collected from the market.

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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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