Draft act proposes penalty for refiners

February 14, 2013

Edible Oil without Vitamin A
Draft act proposes penalty for refiners
The government has taken an initiative to finalise the Edible Oil Fortification Act-2013 with a provision of mandatory Vitamin A fortification in edible oil and imposing ban on import of unfortified oil in a bid to ensure people’s access to Vitamin A.
The industries ministry has already prepared a draft of the proposed law and it has been holding discussions on the issue and seeking
opinions from the stakeholders, said officials concerned.
According to the draft of the law, refiners and
traders will not be allowed to sell, supply or export edible oil without Vitamin A fortification at specified dosage.
Businesses will be prohibited to import unfortified edible oil, too, the draft added.
At a meeting with refiners and experts on Wednesday, the industries ministry disclosed that it had
already supplied 16 premix dosing pump and 15.9 tonnes Vitamin A to 16 vegetable oil refinery factories for fortification
under a project titled ‘Fortification of Edible Oil in Bangladesh.’
Some refiners have already started Vitamin
A fortification, officials
said.
There are 22 edible oil refinery plants in the country. Among them, the authorities of 16 plants have signed the memorandum of understanding with the ministry to fortify edible oil with Vitamin A.
According to the draft law, refiners, however, will be able to import unfortified oil on the condition that they would mix Vitamin A at specified dosage set by the law.
Refiners will have to tag the fortification logo on the bottle, container or packet before marketing to help the consumers identify Vitamin A enriched edible oil, the draft said.
In the draft, the ministry proposed to fine a defaulter Tk 5 lakh for violating the law for the first time and Tk 10-20 lakh for violating it again.
At the meeting presided over by industries
minister Dilip Barua,
refiners suggested that the ministry should organise a national seminar to
take opinions from all stakeholders before finalising
the law.
Officials of the ministry said that the law would be enacted by 2013 to reduce health related problems caused by Vitamin A deficiency.
Earlier in 2012, the ministry inaugurated a fortification programme and unveiled the logo of fortified edible oil.
Industries secretary Mohammad Moinuddin Abdullah, Bangladesh Vegetable Oil Refiners Association president Fazlur Rahman, Dhaka University teacher Ridwanul Haque and
Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition country director Basanta Kumar Kar, among others, spoke at the meeting.

Courtesy of New Age

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