Karnataka Govt Cracks Down On Chemical Food Colour

In February 2024, Mapusa in Goa banned the sale of Indo-Chinese gobi manchurian because vendors might be adding chemical food dyes in the dishes and cooking them in unhygienic conditions. When similar findings were reported in Karnataka, the state government also banned the use of chemicals in food and sent notices to eateries using food colours. However, in an effort to sell more food and cut costs, many vendors continue to add harmful food colouring by fooling the officials as well as the residents.

Video Credit: Kannur Kitchen/ YouTube

Reportedly, the Karnataka government banned the use of chemical hues in dishes like cotton candies, chicken kebab, and gobi manchurian. The ban is yet to be implemented in Hubbali and Dharwad, two districts of the state. After finding that food joints have found a way to go around the regulations, government officials have assured that they will dive deeper into the matter to ensure food safety.

Karnataka Government Succeeded 80% In Implementing The Ban On Food Colours

Deepak Kumar, who is the food safety official for Hubbali-Dharwad, said after announcing the ban on food colours, the official visited many areas in the two cities. They found that 80% of the restaurants and street food joints were complying with the notice, which meant that there were others who were still using chemical dyes in the recipes. 

Speaking to a media outlet, Kumar said that the department will be carrying out special drives to ensure all the restaurants and food joints adhere to the notice. They will be conducting awareness campaigns and issuing notices, especially in areas where they witness Ramadan gatherings in large amounts. 

Residents Want Strict Actions Against Food Joints Using Chemical Dyes

Citing safety concerns for the public, Kumar shared that more than 35 such notices have already been sent to food joints, and they will continue to follow this until 100% of restaurants stop using chemical dyes in their dishes. Many residents have, however, told the media outlet that the ‘80% success’ rate is not true. They said that though the officials have issued notice, the eateries continue to use chemical dyes in food. 

Many food joint owners do not put food colouring in dishes like gobi manchurian or chicken tikka when they are displaying them. They use them in their kitchens in the dishes that customers order. This is quite common in areas like Vidyanagar, Shah Bazar, Keshwapur, Gokul Road, Station Road, Navanagar, and Shah Bazar. Many residents wish that government officials take strict actions against eateries that are trying to fool everyone.