INDIA: The Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) is awaiting laboratory reports of the fish samples drawn from Margao and Panaji markets last week.
Salim Veljee, director, FDA told TOI on Monday that the samples were taken to examine if formalim was used as a preservative. They are expected to receive the reports on Wednesday.
FDA officials had last week drawn 12 samples of fish - eight and four from Margao and Panaji markets respectively - after fisheries minister Vinod Palyekar had written to FDA to monitor the quality of fish supplied and sold in the fish markets across the state.
Formalin is essentially used for the preservation of biological specimen and embalming.
Veljee said: "In the past too, we had drawn samples of fish to check if the chemical was used, but the results had returned negative."
He also clarified that, "Apart from ice, no other substance can be used for preserving fish." As far as raw fish is concerned, Veljee said it is for customers to decide whether it is fresh or stale, and accordingly purchase it. "They can help as much as finding out if any kind of preservative was used," he added.
Following a complaint by one buyer, Joao Pereira about the quality of fish sold in the markets, the fisheries minister last week had suggested that FDA should conduct joint inspections along with fisheries department officials, to ascertain the quality of fish.
Fisheries minister Vinod Palyekar had last week suggested that FDA should conduct joint inspections along with fisheries department officials, to ascertain the quality of fish, following which fish samples were drawn from Margao and Panaji markets.