“DON’T FOOL the customer by selling coloured vegetables. This is unhygienic, unethical and can result in legal action against the guilty,” warned LMC boss, launching a drive against vegetable vendors using non-permissible colours to sell greens. “Colours make vegetables salable, but turn them inedible,” said an LMC official.
Food inspectors NK Gupta, BP Sharma, Praveen Verma and Nafees Ahmed collected samples of parval, lady finger, apples, naga, bitter gourd from Indira Nagar and Chandan Nagar vegetable market on Friday. They have been sent to the State lab to ascertain whether they carried colours. Nagar Swasthya Adhikari BBS Rathore says food-preservatives have a very extensive use, which often constitutes adulteration. Salt is the classic preservative, but it is seldom classified as an adulterant. Salicylic, benzoic, and boric acids, and their sodium salts, formaldehyde, ammonium fluoride, sulphuric acid and its salts are among the principal preservatives. Many of these appear to be innocuous, but there is danger that a continued use of food preservatives may be harmful. LMC will check use of hazardous colours.
He said, “Colours are applied to green vegetables. Sometimes vendors colour them with copper salts. Butter is often made more yellow by anatta. Apples are coloured by red powder. Some colours used by vegetable traders are chrome yellow, prussian blue, copper and arsenic compounds, all injurious to health.
Traders usually use brick dust in chilli powder, coloured chalk powder in turmeric, injectable dyes in peas, capsicum, brinjal, papaya seeds in black pepper etc.”
Anyone found guilty of adulterating vegetables using colours would be dealt strongly. “To avoid illness, one is advised to select vegetables with caution.
People should be careful in areas where hygiene and sanitation are inadequate.
Avoid salads, uncooked vegetables and unpasteurised milk and cheese, especially during the rains. Consumption of food and beverages obtained from street food vendors is an open risk,” he warned.