NKURENKURU – The Nkurenkuru Town Council environmental health inspector Sofia Disho has raised concerns over businesses that continue to keep items that are not fit for human consumption on their business shelves.
This she raised recently when they disposed of items that were confiscated during the OPSON X operation. The joint operation was conducted by the local authority, the health ministry and the police.
The operation targeted counterfeit food and beverages, substandard food and beverages, illegal food supply chains and food fraud, in general, at business premises.
The confiscated items mainly included beverages and dairy products and were confiscated from different businesses such as shebeens and even well-established food retailers.
According to Disho, procedurally, the confiscated items are normally kept in the storeroom for a month – and if no owner comes upfront with any objection, the items are then disposed of.
She also indicated that there is no penalty given to business owners who are found with expired goods on their shelves.
“Once we get food that is expired on the shelves, we confiscate it and then we give warnings. But after three warnings, we have the right to confiscate their fitness certificates.
“Therefore, we will order them to cease operation until they put their shop in order,” she stated.
She cautioned business owners that “they should always be vigilant to always check their products that they are selling to the public. Its a big public health concern if business owners are not taking out expired goods or unfit food from their shops”.
She advised them to use the ‘first in; first out’ system, which allows them to monitor their products. By doing so, they can at least protect the public and their business from unnecessary public issues.
She cautioned the public to be vigilant by always checking the expiry date – and if any expired products are on the shelves, they should inform the health inspector. They also have the right to be refunded for expired items.