By the end of next month, the government’s food safety wing will roll out a mobile food testing laboratory in Patna to collect food samples and conduct on-spot tests. The mobile laboratory will go to people’s doorsteps to check for adulteration in food, create awareness on the dos and don’ts on handling food, and how to check food adulteration at home. The laboratory will conduct tests for common adulterants in milk, water, edible oil and other food items.
But the flaw in this step is that no action will, however, be taken on the basis of the test report of the mobile laboratory, as according to food safety wing norms, action can be initiated only on the basis of reports produced by government-certified laboratories.
The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India have allocated two mobile laboratories to the food safety wing. Each of the labs cost around Rs 40 lakh. The first laboratory will be handed over to the food safety wing in a month while the second will reach Bihar in three-four months.
The mobile food testing laboratory will be equipped with milk analyser, hot air oven, hot plate, mixer grinder, digital weighing scale, digital multi parameter hand-held meter, power generator, air conditioner and refrigerator. Five personnel, including a lab assistant and technician, will be assigned to the units.
Even residents can avail the service of the mobile food testing laboratory by paying a nominal charge of Rs 100-200 once it is be launched in Patna.