Officials of the Food Safety Department seized five kg of chocolates that were of poor quality and tobacco products worth Rs. 5,000 from shops located near educational institutions in Vellore on Wednesday.
A team of six officials conducted checks at shops located near schools and colleges in Otteri, Bagayam and various parts of Vellore. While the officials have been cracking down on the sale of tobacco products near educational institutions, the recent seizure of drug-laced chocolates in Chennai has turned their attention to “unbranded” chocolates, they said.
V. Senthil Kumar, designated officer of the Food Safety and Drug Administration Department, Vellore, along with food safety officers carried out the checks. “We have sent samples of the chocolates for testing,” he said. Shopkeepers would be fined if they continued to violate norms, he warned.
The department, in the last two weeks, had been keeping a tab on the sale of tobacco products near schools and colleges. Checks had been conducted at Vaniyambadi, Ambur, Vellore and Arakkonam, he added.
“We will continue to check for the sale of unbranded chocolates. Such chocolates are not licensed and do not go through quality checks. The wrappers should contain the name and place of manufacture. If not, such chocolates should be avoided,” he said.