Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, while addressing a programme recently marking National Food Safety Day-2021, stressed the need for taking effective actions against food adulteration.
This year's theme of the day is "Bangladesh: A country of sustainable prosperity and safe food".
The premier urged the National Food Safety Authority to be proactive in tackling food adulteration and conduct awareness campaigns.
She also mentioned that a central food testing laboratory is being set up.
The issue of food safety has received significant attention in recent times -- the High Court Division, in the recent years, has issued orders to relevant stakeholders directing them to take stringent actions against food adulteration.
Mobile courts have been particularly active in this regard and have been seen to conduct inspections of restaurants and stores.
The government also has in place the Food Safety Act of 2013 under which complaints may be made to the Food Court regarding violation of the provisions of the act.
Another significant legislation relevant in this regard is the Consumer Rights Protection Act 2009 under which both civil and criminal remedies are available.
The Bangladesh Standards & Testing Institution (BSTI) Act of 2018 is also significant in this regard.
In 2019, the High Court Division issued orders directing the National Food Safety Authority to remove certain products for not meeting requirements under the BSTI Act 2018 and urged the government to declare a "war on food adulteration".
However, despite having laws in place, food adulteration remains a rampant issue, raising the need for concerted efforts on all fronts. Public awareness regarding the impact of adulterated food on health is crucial in reducing the prevalence of these practices.