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EQUIPMENT

Punjab FDA procures Rs 10 cr equipment to check adulteration in desi ghee
Monday, 14 January, 2019, 08 : 00 AM [IST]
Ranjana Sharma, Mumbai
Punjab’s state food safety laboratory, located in Kharar, has procured sophisticated equipment worth Rs 10 crore, with a view to keep a check on adulteration in desi ghee.
 
Giving details on the equipment, Kahan Singh Pannu, Commissioner, Food and Drug Safety, Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Punjab, said, "To contain the cunning, unscrupulous adulterated ghee makers, sophisticated equipment worth Rs 10 crore have been installed at State Food Safety Laboratory. The two equipment installed in laboratory are Inductively Coupled Plasma- Mass Spectrometer (ICPMS) and Gas Chromatograph – Mass Spectrometer (GCMS).”
 
According to Pannu, the newly installed equipment would be helpful in detecting any kind of adulteration in food samples especially desi ghee. Besides, Liquid Chromatograph – Mass Spectrometer (LCMS) has also been procured and it will detect aflatoxins, mycotoxins and so on in food samples.

Pannu stated, "From June 2018, with the launch of Mission Tandrust in state, Food and Drug Commissionerate officials have been carrying out a large number of inspections of  food items on daily basis with seized food samples being sent to the Kharar laboratory for analyses."
 
"However, there was an absence of high-tech machinery to keep a check on the desi ghee, adulteration was not being successfully curtailed," pointed out Pannu.
 
He further stated, "Clever adulterators evaded scrutiny by mixing vegetable oil with Reichert Meissl (RM) value enhancing chemical to make cheap quality desi ghee."

Pannu mentioned, “All the desi ghee manufacturers in the state have now been asked to get their ghee samples tested from state food safety laboratory at the earliest or strict action under the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006, will be undertaken."

Anup Kumar, joint commissioner, food and drug safety, Punjab, explained, “With the installation of these machines, the results can be acquired in two to three days. It will help to check adulteration in various food items like edible oil, dairy, fruits and vegetables.”
 
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