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FDA to Step Up Food Safety Crackdown

The government’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is to bolster its recent campaign against foods that are not safe for consumption, an official from the department said.

“New food products which are not safe for health are entering the market, so or laboratories need to be upgraded,” Daw Khin Saw Hla, deputy director of FDA, told Myanmar Business Today.

Although the central committee for prevention and control of illegal trade regularly inspects and seizes illegal or unsafe goods, food products unfit for consumption still keeps entering the country over land borders, especially from China, she said.

“Some products are unbranded, and they do not have any certification or approval of the FDA,” Daw Khin Saw Hla added.

The primary target of those food products are food stores, schools and shops in the outskirts of cities, particularly Yangon and Mandalay.

The Ministry of Health has announced that it has found four new products which are not safe for consumption, and warned the distributors that they can be sued under the National Food Law.

The four products are Mikiko brand Chinese plums, Twin Kyal brand pickled fruit, Sikoz brand mouth spray and a juice with Chinese branding. These products were found on January 18.

“To prevent this problem, laboratories that can test food products need to be set up at border trade stations,” U Ba Oak Khine, chairman of Myanmar Consumer Protection Association, told Myanmar Business Today.

Food safety issues have created panic in the past as the news stating that fertilisers are used in producing fish paste incensed consumers last year. FDA technicians found urea in the fish paste, but were not sure of the source.

The FDA also recently announced that they have found harmful bacteria in 22 purified water brands.

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