FRUITS AND VEGETABLES
Gammatech Ltd, the joint venture company of the Bangladesh Atomic Energy Commission, and a leading private company known as BEXIMCO, irradiated and marketed about 1300 tons of different food items in 1995–1998. A number of non-traditional food items (food items hitherto untried or not irradiated before) such as beef casing, flour, turtle meat, peat soil, macaroni and others, were successfully irradiated and marketed.
To facilitate commercialization and trade in irradiated foods, Bangladesh adopted in 1995, a specification for Authorization of Irradiation by Classes/Groups of Foods in line with the guidelines proposed by the International Consultative Group on Food Irradiation (ICGFI). This is essentially similar to the Harmonized Regulation on Food Irradiation for Asia and the Pacific adopted in Seoul, Republic of Korea, in April 1998. Radiation disinfestation studies to eliminate nematodes from ginger and turmeric, and mites and thrips from cut flower are in progress at the Institute of Food & Radiation Biology. Research work is also in progress to identify irradiated fruit flies, mites and thrips with radiation sensitive protein markers. The Co-60 gamma irradiator at the Institute is being replaced by a new 50 000 Ci Co-60 source to provide research and development support to commercialization activities. A large multi-purpose Co-60 irradiation facility (500 kCi) is in the process of establishment in the campus of Atomic Energy Research Establishment, Savar, Dhaka, for food and other radiation processing applications.
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