KATHMANDU, August 18: The government is preparing to impose a maximum of five years of imprisonment and a fine of up to Rs 500,000 on anyone producing and selling substandard food items. Laws are being enacted to prevent the production, processing, import, export, storage, transportation or sale of contaminated food.
The government has made a provision of imprisonment and fine in the Food Hygiene and Quality Bill, 2077 BS to make the market clean and ensure the production and sale of quality goods. The National Assembly meeting held last Tuesday unanimously approved the Food Hygiene and Quality Bill tabled by Minister for Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs, Gyanendra Bahadur Karki on behalf of Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba. The bill approved by the upper house will be implemented after it is approved by the House of Representatives.
The Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development has prepared the bill to amend and consolidate the law on food hygiene and quality.
Similarly, the Department of Food Technology and Quality Control (DFTQC) has stated that new arrangements have been made to ensure the quality of food items and control the market. Director General at DFTQC, Upendra Ray said that the bill has special provisions on standards, labels, import, export, industry and other issues of food items. "The bill has already been approved by the National Assembly," he said. "There are many new provisions in the bill."
He said, after the implementation of this law, five regulations will be formulated to help make the market systematic. "New rules are being introduced to improve food technology," he said. "Penalties have also been tightened."