FSSAI cracks down on adulteration, seizes 82 Lakhs stock of suspected adulterated vegetable oil in Navi Mumbai

FSSAI cracks down on adulteration, seizes 82 Lakhs stock of suspected adulterated vegetable oil in Navi Mumbai
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Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI)’s West Region Office, Mumbai has launched various enforcement drives to curb adulteration of food commodities in people's daily diet. 

Based on the information received from Vashi Crime Branch Unit 1, central team inspected the premises of Gautam Agro India, Vashi Mumbai and it was found that the said food business operator is engaged in adulteration of edible vegetable oils. 

During the course of the inspection, large stock of peanut flavor, mustard flavor, containers of various flavoring agents for mixing in edible oil, liquid flavors and other suspicious unknown substances, chemicals used for adulteration and to stabilize the adulterated oil mixture were found to be stored in the premises. 

Since the said establishment is only licensed for packing and selling of edible oils, the presence of suspicious flavoring substances hinted at possible adulteration activities. Therefore, recognizing the seriousness of the matter, the central office has sent an additional team and the investigation continued post-midnight. 

Further, on the suspicion of manufacture/ packing of adulterated oil using suspected ingredients, samples of edible oil ready for sale in the market have also been lifted and the rest are seized. The seized stocks include about 35 tonnes of groundnut oil, mustard oil, sunflower oil, soybean oil, rice bran oil, sesame oil, palm oil etc. of various brands with a market value estimated at Rs.82 lakh 45 thousand. 

The probe has revealed that the said establishment has a serious violation of basic infrastructure and other hygiene, sanitary rules applicable and as required under the Food Safety and Standards Act for this type of food business. Additionally, the said establishment was not found to have functional food laboratory, which is mandatory for vegetable oil packing business. The said business was found to be involved in activity of packing and selling edible sesame oil without a requisite license. Storage of considerable stock of expired edible oil has also come to light. 

Taking serious cognizance of the debilitating effect such products have on the public health and considering consumer safety, the Central Licensing Authority has decided to suspend the license of the said establishment with immediate effect. 

Under these circumstances, FSSAI is appealing to the citizens to be cautious while buying edible oil and also to avoid buying loose oil from the market. Also, to ensure the participation of citizens in maintaining food safety and for the convenience of consumers dedicated Consumer Grievance Portal, Food Safety Connect App, Toll Free Number (1800112100) have been made available by the Authority, so the citizens can immediately report any non-compliance or violation. 

The said investigation was done by a team of Food Safety Officers and Technical Officers from Mumbai Office. Further investigation is underway and necessary action will be taken as per the relevant provisions of law as soon as the analysis report of the samples is received.

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