News on Adulterated Milk

Ban sale of adulterated milk: Activists
Monday, 03/02/2014

HYDERABAD: While top milk suppliers in the state are jacking up prices, activists alleged that milk continues to be adulterated and unsafe for consumption, and demanded a ban on such spurious products till they meet safety standards.

As per analysis of six samples across major brands, milk manufactured by leading Indian and even international companies are of substandard quality, claimed activists who received lab reports following an RTI query. Scientific analysis of milk done at the State Food Laboratory at Nacharam revealed that the samples did not conform to the standards of milk fat and total plate count. In one case, the type of milk was not mentioned on the label, making it a case of 'misbranding'.

"On one hand the milk that is being sold is toxic and on the other hand, these companies are hiking their prices. We have been fighting for distribution of safe milk for a long time, but nothing is being done ," said Achyuta Rao, who had filed a petition with the human rights commission last year on this matter.

Activists further alleged that the price of milk has more than doubled since 2008 when one litre cost an average of Rs 16 compared to the Rs.40 charged now. Previous analysis of samples from these brands had revealed dangerously high levels of enterobacteria such as salmonella and e-coli, known to cause gasteroenteritis, fever and typhoid.

The continuing racket surrounding milk adulteration is currently being discussed in the Lokayukta and petitioners have asked the GHMC's health and family welfare department to call for a ban on spurious milk products. The most vulnerable group, activists claimed, are children, especially infants, who have been weaned of breast milk. Ironically, a milk survey undertaken by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) found AP to be in the 'mostly safe' zone compared to other states.

Meanwhile, statements issued by some of the top brands said that they have been compelled to raise the price of their milk products on account of increase in milk procurement costs.


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