Beware Of Food Adulteration During Festive Season : The festive season has begun with Diwali celebrations, the wedding season, and the New Year festivities. And what are Indian celebrations without an abundance of delicious food? With a significant surge in the demand for packaged food and ingredients during this festive period, there is also an increase in the circulation of adulterated and counterfeit food items in the market. Adulterated and fake products such as oils, ghee, paneer, spices, juices, cold drinks, and liquor are readily available. The market also commonly offers fake mineral water bottles filled with unfiltered water, counterfeit candies made with chemicals, biscuits and sweets using substandard oils, and more.
While some may not take this issue seriously, consuming these adulterated and counterfeit products can harm one’s health and well-being.
- These food products may contain low-quality substitutes that can harm health over time or lead to immediate illness, such as food poisoning. Fraudsters utilize low-quality, unsafe ingredients and sometimes highly harmful chemicals like unapproved colours, sawdust, lead, stone dust, grass paste, cow or horse dung, and inferior-quality oils. In some cases, the consequences can be as severe as loss of life, as we often come across news reports of contaminated or unsafe liquor leading to fatalities.
- Recurring illnesses and fatigue affect your family, and you may indicate that it’s crucial to assess the quality of your food. Stomach infections, allergic reactions, nausea, diarrhoea, and potentially more severe health issues like diabetes or cardiovascular diseases could be attributed to the consumption of contaminated food, whether it occurs once or persistently. These adulterated and counterfeit food products can weaken the body’s defence and render it susceptible to illnesses. Food fraud, which involves the adulteration and sale of counterfeit food items, is one of the most reprehensible crimes against humanity, and we must take steps to safeguard our well-being.
- A recent survey (ASPA CRISIL Report to the Nation) revealed that 89 per cent of consumers are aware of fake products in the market. Unfortunately, 31% of consumers willingly buy a product even when they know it is fake. The report also mentions that 25 to 30 per cent of the products in the Indian market across various categories are counterfeit/fake.
– Avoid buying open food items and ingredients; opt for packaged products.
– Buy from authorised vendors, shops and websites. Take the bill for your purchase.