Department of Health concerned about sale of ‘fake foods’ in SA

POLOKWANE – According to a statement released by the national Department of Health, they have noted with concern, food related videos that are circulating on social media about the alleged ‘unsafe’ manufacturing of certain fake foods in South Africa.

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Spokesperson for the department, Popo Maja says that due to the high volume of complaints received by the Department in the past few days, they are taking the allegations seriously as potential for danger to human health.

“While the authenticity of these videos cannot be verified, some cases are currently being investigated by environmental health practitioners based in municipalities. We have the responsibility to determine if there is truth to these allegations, and where necessary take urgent action against perpetrators,” Maja said.

These Somalians fake goods will surprise you look at this bread, deeped in water but it still don't collapsed. When Xenophobia start South Africa is a bad country attack black foreign Africans.

Posted by Nagast Mthuyi Dube on Wednesday, 8 August 2018

According to the department, the following items have been described as fake, harmful food colourants:
Fake eggs being manufactured; fake eggs being cooked; fake plastic rice and fish; fake beef; fake mutton; coke 1,25L with moving things inside; Fanta grape’s 1,25L label; Stoney ginger beer (no size indicated); Fanta orange 1,25L;Granadilla twist (2L); tonic water 1L; Valpre Spring water; Albany brown bread and Blue Band margarine; syrup being sold as honey; baked beans in a fish tin etc.

Foodborne disease outbreaks in South Africa are typically caused by food contaminated with bacteria, viruses or parasites and harmful colourants.

Maja says ‘sudan red dye’ colourant is prohibited for use in foods products in South Africa, as per the Regulations Relating to Food Colorants (R.1008) of the Foodstuffs, Cosmetics and Disinfectant Act 54 of 1972 and that a special sampling run for this colourant, targeting certain products, is being conducted.

“The Ministry of Health views these allegations as serious and has instructed provinces and municipalities to investigate all these claims. Municipalities have embarked on special blitzes to inspect foodstuff sold mainly in townships’ outlets. This is a special operation over and above the normal routine monitoring done by Environmental Health Practitioners (health inspectors),” he said.

Posted by Meshack Mish Dube on Sunday, 17 June 2018

The following video, posted on Facebook by Meshack Dube received 528 966 views

The food industry has also been requested to confirm the authenticity of the potential counterfeit foodstuffs which include verifying the brands of their products such as soft drinks, tinned foodstuffs, etc.

Maja added that the Department are working in partnership with other Government regulatory authorities from Agriculture as well as Trade and Industry, including the National Consumer Commission, to confirm allegations of compromised quality standards.

“The public is encouraged to notify environmental health practitioners and the South African Police Services regarding any suspicious foodstuffs and provide evidence where possible. To date, the Ministry of Health has received no reports or notifications of human illness associated with such ‘fake’ food products doing rounds on social media,” he concluded.

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  AUTHOR
Raeesa Kimmie
Journalist

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