Bengaluru: Health and Family Welfare Minister U T Khader has appealed to retailers to not sell Maggi noodles till the test reports are ready in the state and advised people to not buy it.
Mr Khader said he had directed officials to collect random samples from the manufacturing unit in Nanjangud and retail shops in the State. “The test reports will be made public in the next two days,” he said.
The Minister said the samples would be tested in the four Food Safety and Standards Association of India (FSSAI)-identified divisional laboratories, Mysuru-based CFTRI as well as six NABL-accredited private laboratories in the State.
“If required, we will get it tested by laboratories outside the State too,” he said.
FSSAI Deputy Director H.S. Shivakumar said the food safety officers had started surveillance from May 27 as a precautionary measure.
Naresh Bhat, consultant hepatologist and gastroenterologist at Colombia Asia Hospital, said there was no need for people to panic as only long-term regular consumption of the product could affect a person’s health. While MSG can cause certain reactions only in people who are sensitive to it, lead can cause swelling of the brain in children. In adults, it can cause constipation, nerve paralysis, stomach pain and anaemia in some cases, he said.
After samples of Maggi noodles manufactured in March 2014 were found to have high levels of monosodium glutamate (MSG) and lead, the Union Consumer Affairs Ministry had directed State governments to get samples of the product tested.
After receiving an official communication from the ministry on Monday, 66 food safety officers in the State have been put on the job of collecting samples.