SWEETMEATS are consumed in great quantities all over Bangladesh. From times immemorial, rasgullas and similar sweets have been the part of this country’s eating delights. However, it is doubtful whether the same tastes and other qualities of Sweetmeats have been retained. Old timers lament that they no longer find the syrup in the rasgoolas from which the item derived its name. Others complain about lack of that special taste in the sweetmeats because once these used to be made out of pure cow’s milk that has been replaced by powdered milk.
However, the greater worry among know is that sweetmeats have become highly hazardous too for health. Sweetmeat producers have taken to making the same with powdered milk because powdered milk is substantially cheaper than the usual cow’s milk. But there are reasons to fear that consignments of hazardous powdered milk continue to pour into Bangladesh beating the gatekeepers. True, some consignments of radioactive milk were detected and seized over the years. But many such consignments probably were not and more are possibly regularly coming into the country because the same are sold very cheap because of their health hazarding nature and a section of users are very keen to use this especially cheap powered milk, to boost their profits. The casualties in the process are the unknowing consumers. Besides, they are also subjected to other impurities. Even sweetmeat producers who make sweetmeats from cow’s milk dilute such milk with water drawn from unclean rivers. A newspaper reported about a year ago that a famous brand sweetmeats seller in Dhaka used river water diluted milk in this production process. Proper hygiene is also not maintained by workers and others in the places where sweetmeats are made.
People cannot absolutely stop eating sweetmeats from knowledge of such health threats. But increasing attention to the health endangering aspects of sweetmeats ought to alert the variously health and inspection authorities to step up. There activities so that sweetmeats producers feel the pressure to drop their lust for undue profile and go for safer ways of production.