Ramadan food safetyZero-tolerance on food poisoning – that is the Health Ministry’s call to both state authorities and consumers in the run-up to Ramadan. Ministry deputy director-general Datuk Dr Shafie Ooyub said the early preparation of meals and a lack of hygiene had been cited as the main causes for the rise in food-poisoning cases recorded during Ramadan in past years.

“Health authorities have detected an alarming increase during the fasting period, and this cannot be tolerated,” he said on Thursday when launching a campaign to counter water-borne diseases and food poisoning here. As such, he said, the ministry had embarked on a campaign to promote proper food preparation and generate awareness of hygiene among food handlers in the run-up to Ramadan this time round.

Besides the awareness campaign, the department will step up enforcement and monitoring of all13,127 food premises. In schools, parent-teacher associations and teachers will be roped in to see that food served is both nutritious and clean.

Asked about the water supply, Dr Shafie said the health authorities was working with Air Kelantan Sdn Bhd to ensure that piped water was of good quality.