July 19, 2018
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) of Maharashtra is determined to send fish samples to go through formalin test after the Goan government has banned fish import from other states. The implementation of ban was enforced as a precautionary measure after formalin was found in fish that came by various shipments to Goa.
“During monsoon, a majority of fish supply comes from other States. After Goa has found formalin-laced fish in several consignments, we have to start our precautionary tests too,” Pallavi Darade, FDA commissioner said. She also said that inspectors from the FDA will be randomly testing fish samples collected from retail outlets, fish markets and suppliers.
Being cautious for public safety, the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has released a document on dos and don’ts before buying and eating sea food. Basic measures include washing the fish thoroughly under running water so that the formaldehyde gets dissolved in it and washes off the fish. Also, the fish should be cooked that 75°C till the interior side.
According to the FSSAI, consumption of large amount of formaldehyde can cause abdominal pain, vomiting, coma, renal injury and prove even fatal to humans. Also, the International Agency for Research on Cancer of the World Health Organization has declared the chemical ‘carcinogenic to humans’ and has found it to be a cause of nasopharyngeal cancer.
Use of formaldehyde on fish is to keep the catch fresh for longer duration. As one can easily get it, the fish traders and suppliers often use it to lure the consumer to sell as freshly caught fish. In dearth of good quality ice harvest centres and lack of warehousing facility for mass storage, is also proves as another reason that fish sellers use this deadly chemical.