Kolkata: The Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) will jointly conduct raids with the state Enforcement Branch to end the sale of wax-coated apples. A meeting was held in this regard with the food safety officials of the KMC and senior officials of the Enforcement branch.
"We have collected samples of apples from a market at Paikpara in the northern part of the city. Prima facie we have found wax coating on the fruit. We will have to find out the source from where these apples are being procured. The sale of these apples is illegal," Member Mayor-in-Council (Health) Atin Ghosh said.
This coating, according to a senior official of the civic body, is Petropon Paraffin wax that is used to polish shoes and cars. This is used to make the fruits extra glossy.
It may be mentioned that the police, a few days back, had raided some stores and arrested two shopkeepers from Sinthi More area on allegations of selling wax coated apples. The duo have demanded that they had procured the stuff from Mechua Bazaar in Posta area that houses a massive wholesale fruit market.
"We are not ruling out that such wax mixed apples are being supplied from other states as well. Hence, we will be taking help of central Food Safety Commission to prevent the entry of such apples," a senior food safety officer said.
According to a city doctor, the wax polish cuts the supply of oxygen to the fruits. "Consuming this wax can immediately effect the digestive system and if consumed over a long period of time, it can also lead to respiratory issues, ulcers and infections," he added.
"We believed that the extra-glossy skin of the apples were a sign of their freshness and good quality. However, we are shocked at the recent development," a fruit buyer at Mechua market said.