Meghalaya prohibits the sale and distribution of imported fish for 2 weeks
Meghalaya prohibits the sale and distribution of imported fish for 2 weeks

SHILLONG: After a sample test of river water fish revealed the presence of formalin, the Meghalaya government has banned the sale, distribution, and storage of imported fish for a 15-day period, officials said Friday.

Anyone who disobeys a government order faces a seven-year prison sentence and a fine of Rs. 10 lakhs.

Thirty of the 40 fish samples that were tested for formalin were found to be positive, as per report from the state's commissioner for food safety, M. Kurbah. The samples were very hazardous and harmful to health, as per analytical results from the Meghalaya government's assistant food analyst on Tuesday.

Formalin is not listed among the permissible preservatives in the Food Safety and Standards (Food Products Standards and Food Additives) Regulations, 2011, which lists the preservatives that may be used in specific food articles.

As per reports, fresh fish treated with formalin or other prohibited preservatives makes the distribution, storage, and sale of the products "unsafe" under the 2006 Food Safety and Standard Act., "the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006 hereby prohibits the storage, distribution, or sale of imported fresh fish or crustaceans brought from outside the state for a period of 15 days in the interest of public health or until corrective measures are taken."

Meghalaya imports a variety of fish species, primarily from Bangladesh, West Bengal, Assam, and Andhra Pradesh.

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