Rs 9.5 Lakh Fine Imposed On Domino's For Failing Cheese Test
The court of an additional district magistrate (ADM) in Shahjahanpur has levied a fine of Rs 9.50 lakh on a Domino’s outlet in Shahjahanpur and its supplier in Pune after a sample of cheese used in a pizza failed to pass a lab test.
The milk fat content in the ‘diced super stretch Mozzarella cheese’ was found to be below the prescribed minimum limit of 35 percent. The fine was imposed by the court of ADM (administration) JK Sharma.
A fine of Rs 4 lakh fine has been imposed on the Shahjahanpur district manager of Jubilant Food Work (franchisee for Domino’s Pizza), Rs 5 lakh on Schreiber Dynamics Dairies, the supplier, and Rs 50,000 on the seller, Suresh Upadhyaya.
Report says insufficient fat percentage
The sample of cheese was taken on July 4, 2015, by food security officer (FSO) Yugul Kishore and sent for a lab test at government regional public analysis laboratory in Varanasi. Food analyst UC Gangwar completed the study of the sample and found an insufficient fat percentage. The lab test was completed between July 22 and 28, 2015 and the report were sent to the FSO on August 5, 2015.
Upon receiving the report, notices were issued to Jubilant Food, Schreiber Dynamics Dairies and the seller Suresh Upadhyaya and a case were filed in the court of the ADM. After a trial that lasted nearly two years, the court imposed fine in this case. The defendant had filed a counter case in this matter, that the cheese was not kept under prescribed conditions (refrigeration) due to which the sample couldn’t pass the lab test.
District manager of Jubilant Food Abhishek Seth told The Times Of India, “I am not aware that a fine has been imposed in this case. All legal issues are dealt by Jubilant Foods and they will deal with this one as well.”
JK Sharma said, “The sample failed to pass the lab test and it was a serious issue as they were not delivering what they have promised.”
Jubilant Food spokesperson told TOI, “Jubilant Food Works has been informed about the court’s ruling. However, we would like to state that the test conducted by us for the same batch of cheese at a NABL-certified lab confirms that the fat content in the cheese is as per the limits prescribed by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India.”
Not the first time
It isn’t the first case where the quality of food is not fit for consumption. Many food items in the past have faced fines due to laboratory test issues. Previously, Nestle India was imposed with a fine of Rs 45 lakh for selling substandard instant Maggie noodles after a laboratory test found a high ash content in its popular brand.
The court also slapped a Rs 26 lakh fine on Nestle India’s distributors. This case against the Swiss food firm’s India unit is one of various filed by the regulators after they found an excess lead, ash, and monosodium glutamate (MSG), in different samples of the Maggi noodles.
The case took around 2 years which is a very long duration of time and the government should impose strict laws on such companies and the judiciary must set an example for other institutions since 9.5 lakh fine is peanuts for such brands. The Logical Indian believes that utmost attention is required when it comes to food and license of the outlets should be cancelled so that the standards are not tampered with.