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HC wants reports on adulterated milk, curd producing Cos

Published : Thursday, 16 May, 2019 at 12:00 AM  Count : 641

The High Court (HC) on Wednesday directed Bangladesh Food Safety Authority (BFSA) and Bangladesh Standards and Testing Institution (BSTI) to submit separate reports by June 23 containing a list of the companies and persons involved in adulteration of milk, curd and other dairy products.
BFSA and BSTI will have to explain in the report as to what legal actions have been taken against the responsible persons and authorities for adulterating the dairy products.
The court also asked Prof Dr Shahnnila Ferdousi, Chief of the National Food Safety Laboratory (NFSL), to appear before it on May 21 along with the study report prepared by her organization on raw cow milk.
The NFSL, in the study report, said that it has found the presence of excessive levels of lead, pesticides in raw cow milk, regular consumption of which may pose threats to human health.
The study also found a high level of chromium in fodder besides the study found excessive presence of pesticides antibiotics and bacteria in raw cow milk, according to the study.
An HC bench comprising Justice Md Nazrul Islam Talukder and Justice KM Hafizul Alam passed the order after hearing on a time petition submitted by BFSA authorities.
BFSA's counsel barrister Faridul Alam told the court that the Food Safety Authority requires more time as it could not prepare the report within the timeframe.
On May 8, the HC directed BFSA to submit a list of the companies involved in adulteration of milk and curd within May 15. BSFA submitted a report on May 8 which said harmful chemical lead and antibiotics were found in 96 samples of unpacked milk collected from the market.
Besides, adulteration was evident in 18 of the 31 samples of packaged milk but the names of the milk-producing companies responsible for the adulteration were absent in the report. The samples were tested at the National Food Safety Laboratory.
Of the 96 samples of the raw milk tested, 93 had total plate and coliform counts above the permissible limits, the Food Safety Authority report said, adding that salmonella was found in one sample.
BFSA said according to a chemical analysis, lead was found above acceptable limits in five samples, aflatoxin in three samples, tetracycline in 10 samples, ciprofloxacin in one sample, and pesticide (endosulfan) in nine samples.
The report added that of the 31 (21 local and 10 imported) samples of the packed liquid milk, 17 had the total plate and coliform counts at harmful levels.
On February 11, the High Court directed the authorities concerned to conduct a survey to determine how much cow milk, dairy products and cow fodders containing bacteria, antibiotic, lead and pesticides are supplied across the country.
Different national dailies published reports on February 10 citing survey findings on the presence of pesticides, antibiotic and bacteria in raw cow milk.

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