KOZHIKODE: With just few days left for With just a few days left for Vishu, shops offering organic vegetables charging higher prices are rising as people are increasingly scared of the ‘poisoned' ones from other states. But food safety officials cannot trace their genuineness. The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India has just one testing centre in the state for pesticides, which is at the Agriculture Research Institute in Thiruvananthapuram. “The samples have to be sent in 24 hours, or else it is of no use,” said O. Sankaran Unni, FSSAI assistant commissioner.
"It's very expensive and time-consuming. At present, the department is running short of funds. How is it possible to check all the samples that we send on a regular basis?" “For this Vishu season, we would be collecting samples from all the outlets. Even though the results of which will not be available before the festival, we will be getting an idea on the safety of the food we consume in the name of organic," he added. The good agriculture practice (GAP) certification from the selected Krishi Bhavans in the State is the only method to ensure the quality of the farm products.