FSSAI: States told to keep vigil on sale of fruits & veggies with pesticides, wax coating

The food authority has asked state food safety departments to keep a strict vigil on sale of fresh fruit and vegetables for presence of pesticides residues, non-permitted wax coating, non-permitted artificial ripener, and artificial colours.

“Surveillance/enforcement activities may be undertaken from time to time in a planned manner to ensure that the fruits & vegetables being sold under your jurisdiction comply with the provision of FSS Act and rules or regulations made thereunder,” reads the direction issued by the FSSAI adding that to curb the menace of excess use of pesticides, non-permitted wax coating, artificial ripener, and colour a strict vigil needs to be kept on FBOs who are involved in manufacturing, re-packing fresh/surface treated/ minimally processed fruits & vegetables.

FSSAI has also asked the state food safety commissioners to launch awareness campaign regarding the same to educate the FBOs and consumers.

FSSAI had issued such letters to the states earlier in April and July this year, as well, after the NHRC took a suo-moto cognisance to the issues relating to excess use of pesticides by farmers.

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