To check out adulterants such as ammonia and formaldehyde in fish, the Central Institute of Fisheries Technology (CIFT), Kochi, has developed a unique kit. Once the device is out in the market, people buying fish can check chemicals in it within three minutes.
Since ammonia helps in preventing ice from melting and formaldehyde increases the shelf life of fish, therefore many people in the fishery sector use these chemicals. However, the continuous ingestion of ammonia and formaldehyde can lead to many health issues, including abdominal pain, vomiting, unconsciousness, and even death in the worst case.
In stored fish, ammonia cannot be detected but formaldehyde presence can be found out. India’s domestic fish market is reported to be selling formaldehyde-adulterated fish, especially in markets located far away from landing centres or production sites.
Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh on Tuesday launched the kit saying that continuous monitoring of these contaminants in a laboratory is time-consuming and requires expertise as some people use toxic chemicals in the form of contaminated substances.
“Formaldehyde is potential cancer-inducing chemical, which is a major health concern, therefore, its use needs to be curbed,” said the Minister.
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