Saturday, January 21, 2012


Food safety considerations to day far outweigh other concerns and governments, industry and the consumers are on the edge fearing for the worst any time. Though the situation is no as alarming as being touted around, still it is the duty of all the three stake holders to strive hard to attain perfection as far as possible in this endeavor. against such a background it is understandable that there was a big hue and cry regarding the reported use of industrial grade salt in the manufacture by some processors in Europe with people differing in their perspectives regarding any danger from such a practice, deliberate or otherwise. Here is an interesting commentary on this episode.

Morgunblaðið reports that comparable research indicates that there is hardly any difference between the industrial salt carried by Ölgerðin and salt specifically intended for food production. The salt normally used in food production contains 99.8 percent NaCl and the industrial salt 99.6 percent. The copper content is 0.1 mg/kg in the food salt and 0.4 mg/kg in the industrial salt. According to Codex quality standard, NaCl content must be no less than 97 percent in food grade salt and the copper content is not to exceed 2.0 mg/kg and so both grades are safe to use for food production. The Dutch company Akzo Nobel, which produced the salt for Ölgerðin, responded to an enquiry by MAST stating that the industrial salt does not pose a risk to consumers' health but as not as strict demands are made on its production and storage as food grade salt it shouldn't be used in food products. "This matter is first and foremost about surveillance and we at Ölgerðin understand that," said CEO of Ölgerðin Andri Þór Guðmundsson. "We have carried this salt for 13 years and before that it was carried by others. It is not at all dangerous which is why MAST permitted us to finish the stock," he elaborated. "Even so we are sorry that this happened and we will review all our procedures to prevent it from happening again," Andri Þór concluded.

it must be admitted that food industry has the duty and responsibility to use ingredients that conform to food standards and safety specifications prescribed by the regulatory agencies. Same applies to medicines also where only pharmacopia specified ingredients are only used. These compulsory requirements are based on certain perceptions universally agreed to and any violation, serious or otherwise is difficult to be condoned. Though the violators argue that there is not much difference between food grade and industrial grade salt, the moot question is why then there are two different specifications at all? Food grade salt for example distinctly lays down upper limits for toxic metals like arsenic, Copper, Lead, Cadmium and Mercury but does industrial grade salt has such rigid requirements. Doubtful. Probably if such salts are used accidentally, it must be the duty of the safety agencies to examine the salt for its conformation to Codex standards before declaring that the foods containing it are safe for human consumption.



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sweetball said...

Thank You

The given information is very effective
i will keep updated with the same

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