Food

Contamination Free Food for Dhaka City

How can contamination free fresh food be available to citizens of Dhaka?

Food adulteration is one of the most important problems faced by 8.9 million population of Dhaka City.
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Challenge description

The food contamination and food adulteration situation of Bangladesh is a serious public health concern. Unsafe/contaminated food causes many acute and life-long diseases,Globally foodborne and waterborne diarrhoeal diseases taken together kill about 2.2 million people annually, of them 1.9 million are children. However, in Bangladesh dependable assessment of the public health impact due to food contamination is not available due to absence of a regular monitoring system. Limited data from the ICDDR,Bangladesh indicates 501 hospital visits per day for treatment of diarrhoea that were attributable to food and water borne causes. General scenario on food contamination demonstrates a widespread non hygienic practice in food handling by both food producers and food traders.

In a recent test conducted by Institute Of Public Health Bangladesh, adulteration has been found in all 43 consumer goods. The rate of the adulteration is 40 percent and nearly 100 percent adulteration found on 13 items among the 43 consumer goods tested.

Coloring agents chrome, tartzine, yellow and sudan red colors and erythrosine are used in spices, sauces, juices, lentils, oils which cause cancer, allergy, and respiratory problem. Formalin and carbide used in fish, fruit, meat and milk also cause cancer and liver damage. Besides, rye flour used in barley, bread and wheat flour, urea used in puffed rice and rice, Sulfuric acid used in milk, Oleomargarine or lard and DDT applied in dried fish cast long-term effects like nervous system disorder, depression, asthma, cardiac system, liver and kidney damage etc.

Besides, burnt engine oil is used to fry Jilapi, while artificial fragrance is applied on flowers. Application of excessive and unauthorised pesticides also causes contamination of food. Additives used for making food items attractive can be lethal if those are cancerous. Food grains, vegetables, and fish also get contaminated by industrial pollution of the soil, air, and water.

Challenge vision

Solutions could focus on:

  • Safe and sustainable way of fresh food production without using harmful chemical
  • Standard testing procedure for food contamination
  • Supply chain management
  • Increasing awareness
  • easy and affordable way to detect contamination
  • Modern law and reporting system for violation

Let's create sustainable Dhaka for tomorrow

Can we find sustainable solution for the challenges related to food safety, waste management and energy consumption of Dhaka City?

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