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Meghalaya: Govt Bans Import of Formalin Contain Fish From Outside the State

The Meghalaya govt banned the import of fish from outside the state for 15 days after laboratory testing revealed that 30 samples of fish tested positive for 'formalin.'

Fish or formalin

Sentinel Digital Desk

SHILLONG: Approximately 80% of fish samples collected in Meghalaya last month tested positive for formalin, a colourless solution of formaldehyde in water used primarily as preservation for biological materials.

The Meghalaya government banned the import and sale of fish from outside the state for 15 days after laboratory testing revealed that 30 samples of fish tested positive for 'formalin,' an unapproved preservative.

Commissioner of Food Safety RM Kurbah In a notification said, “The storage, distribution, or sale of imported fresh fish or crustaceans received from outside the state is now forbidden for a period of 15 days in the interest of public health or until corrective measures are implemented, beginning on the date this notification is issued.”

Kurbah further cautioned that failure to comply with this notification may result in imprisonment for up to 7 years and a fine of up to Rs 10 lakh under Section 59 (iv) of the Food Safety & Standards Act, 2006.

According to the announcement, 30 of the 40 fish samples tested positive for formalin, which is highly poisonous and harmful to health, according to analysis reports from the Assistant Food Analyst to the Government of Meghalaya in a report dated June 6.

Regulation 3.1.4 of the Food Safety and Standards (Food Products Standards & Food Additives) Regulations, 2011, states the preservatives permitted to be used in specific articles of food, and formalin is not on that list.

And although the distribution, storage, and sale of fresh fish treated with formalin or other prohibited preservatives renders the goods 'unsafe' under Section 3(1)(zz)(v) of the Food Safety & Standard Act of 2006, the order further stated.

According to the official, 30 of the 42 samples gathered in the first phase tested positive for formalin, and more samples are being collected from as many markets as feasible. According to FSSAI experts, eating mold-contaminated foods can induce memory loss, headaches, joint pain, and a chronic cough.

According to the officials, ingestion of as little as 30 ml of a 37% solution of formalin can be lethal, and continual use can induce significant gastrointestinal disorders.

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