Rajahmundry: The Food Standards and Safety Authority of India (FSSAI) plans to swoop down on food business operators (FBOs) — hoteliers, restaurateurs and those who run roadside eateries and food joints — who have been adding colour to food indiscriminately, endangering the health of consumers in East Godavari district. Artificial food colours, like lemon yellow, sunset yellow, metanil yellow, brilliant blue, indigo carmine, orange and others are being added to biryani and curries to make them look enticing.
Gazetted food inspector B.V.S.R.K. Prasad said, “There is a misconception among a section of FBOs that they can use food colour in preparation of food and sweets to make them more tasty and impressive. But in fact, only confectioneries are permitted to use such colours in preparation of sweets.”
They recently received a complaint from a Kakinada resident who said that the chicken lollipops served at a food joint located near Bhanugudi Centre had an excessive amount of food colour and sought action against the owner.
By the time the authorities rushed there, the chicken lollipops were over, but they did find that the chicken biryani was emitting a foul smell and have sent samples of it to the state food laboratory in Hyderabad for analysis. They will proceed against the owner once the analysis report is in hand.
The FSSAI officials had earlier carried out inspections at hotels and sweet shops in Vijayawada and found excessive use of food colour in mysore pak and other sweets and have booked cases against the owners under the provisions of the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006.