Fish lovers in Kerala and the rest of the country, who are cautious of formalin contamination in the supply, will soon be able to test their fish using quick test kits. According to sources, Kochi-based Central Institute for Fisheries and Technology has designed quick test kits that will be able to detect formalin contamination. The kits will most likely be available in the market by next week.
The quick test kit contains a strip which turns blue if the fish is contaminated with formalin or ammonia.
In June, Kerala food safety officers had tested four trucks with around 28,000 tonnes of fish for Kerala from Tamil Nadu and Hyderabad. The fish was found contaminated with formalin. The quick test kits revealed the results.
For the lack of space in Kerala for the supply's disposal, the fish were sent back to the state of origin with an instruction to avoid their sale.
"Once the people are made aware of their benefits, both consumers as well as wholesale vendors would want to use the kits to ensure they don't get contaminated fish. Therefore, the Central Institute of Fisheries Technology has helped us with the mass production of these quick test kits that they developed. Earlier, we had to rely on laboratory reports alone, but now at least the kits will help us in early detection. It should be out in the market next week and should not cost more than Rs 3-4 per test," Kerala Safety Commissioner Rajamanikam told NDTV.
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