Spotting Food Fraud

Misuse of food additives and chemicals is putting millions of lives at risk in sub-Saharan Africa, but informal markets and a lack of oversight make “food fraud” hard to regulate.
 
One chemical, Gamalin, is used to kill fish by poisoning water. Formalin—a highly toxic chemical normally applied to dead bodies—is used to preserve meat.  
 
But not all misused chemicals are illegal. Products used to accelerate ripening of products like pineapples and plantains are also dangerously overused by market sellers.
 
There are ways to spot bad actors: watch out for bunches that appear too uniform—naturally ripened bananas do not ripen at the same pace.
 
SciDev.net

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