Mahakhali kitchen market on Thursday became the capital city’s third commercial centre pledging to prevent traders from selling formalin-tainted commodities.
The market will now have a machine that can correctly detect formalin in commodities like fish, fruits and other foodstuff.
Commerce Minister GM Quader handed the machine _ donated by Standard Bank _ to ASM Mominul Hoque, a trader of Mohakhali Bazar, where a trader Iman Ali has been trained to use the machine.
Malibagh Kitchen Market and Shantinagar Bazar are the two other formalin-free markets.
The Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry is leading the campaign against tainting foodstuff with formalin.
Formalin, a chemical solution, is widely used mainly in imported fish in Bangladesh to prevent it from early rotting. Its use in fish and foodstuff has become a serious public health problem in the country.
Declaring Mohakhali Bazar free from formalin Quader said the government will make stringent laws to prevent the abuse of formalin and provide for exemplary punishment to the offenders.
He called for public awareness, especially among buyers and sellers for checking food adulteration.
He reiterated that import of formalin would not be allowed without permission from the Commerce Ministry.
“The government can’t totally ban import of formalin as it’s widely used in different organizations including educational institutions, leather and textiles industries and pharmaceutical sector.”
“But, the use of formalin will be controlled, he said.
The minister said the government is committed to making all markets across the country formalin-free.
FBCCI president AK Azad, its first vice president M Jashim Uddin, FBCCI director M Helal Uddin, lawmaker and renowned singer Momtaz Begum, Chairman of Standard Bank Ltd Qazi Akram Uddin Ahmed, administrator of Dhaka City Corporation (North) M Shahjahan Ali Molla, among others, spoke on the occasion.
AK Azad urged the media to do more investigative reports help identify the culprits involved in food adulteration.
Helal Uddin said business people want to turn all markets in the capital free from formalin within next two months.
He demanded those responsible for abuse of formalin should be tried by Speedy Trial Tribunal.