Gourmet Bakery’s production units sealed by Punjab Food Authority as following the Supreme Court orders
Gourmet Bakery’s Production units were sealed by Punjab Food Authority. PFA did this as following the Supreme Court’s direction. PFA continued the province-wide inspection drive against Gourmet Bakery.
In this connection, provincial food regulatory body sealed five production units of Gourmet Bakery in Faisalabad, Sialkot and Multan over failure to meet the standards of Punjab Pure Food Regulations. PFA Director General Muhammad Usman said the competent authority sealed beverages section of Gourmet Five Stars on the charges of printing halal logo on bottles but failed to provide its certificate on the spot to the team.
The team also discovered stinking environment, improper cleanliness arrangements and rusty filters of syrup room tanks. Gourmet Hajveri Foods, located at Daska was shut down by PFA over non-compliance of the authority instructions, preserved food on foot level, improper freezer storage and for storing raw and cooked meat together in the cold store. PFA raided ANC Foods Gourmet, located at industrial area Multan, and sealed it on account of improper labelling, presence of ‘rappee’ (naswar). PFA also sealed kitchen section of Gourmet Foods in Lahore at Bhobtian Chowk for violating the PFA rules. Dairy and meat products were also stored at one place. The production will remain suspended till further orders.
Meanwhile, Chief Justice of Pakistan Mian Saqib Nisar on Wednesday accepted an unconditional apology tendered by the GNN news channel’s owners for making a Sifarish (request for favour) to the top judge to show leniency.
A three-member bench of the Supreme Court of Pakistan was hearing a complaint filed by the director general (DG) of the Punjab Food Authority (PFA).
The DG alleged that the news channel, owned by the Gourmet group, was running a “character assassination” campaign against him after the authority found the company’s ice cream and frozen desserts unfit for human consumption.
During a hearing of the case on Tuesday, the chief justice had showed annoyance over receiving a late night phone call by the group seeking favour to the company.
Following the court order, Gourmet Bakery and GNN owners Zulqarnain Chattha and Shehryar Chattha appeared before the court and sought pardon.
The chief justice said” “Do you think courts run on Sifarish?” He went on to say: “Your company’s ice cream is found substandard, it causes liver disease. You launched a character assassination campaign against the DG after he took action against the bakery ice cream. You should feel ashamed of it.”
Shehryar expressed guilt over the channel’s move and said: “It was a mistake made by the subordinate staff. We will follow in letter and spirit the orders that are issued by the court.”
Moreover, CJP Nisar reminded the owners that earlier samples of the bottled water sold by the group were found unsatisfactory. On it, Shehryar assured the chief justice that necessary action had been taken and guidelines issued by the food authority were being implemented by the group.
Following this, the PFA DG told the court that “the authority had sent the ice cream samples to a laboratory recommended by the Gourmet Bakery group. The lab results showed that the ice cream could cause liver disease among consumers”. He claimed: “The media did not highlight the poor performance of major food companies like Gourmet because they gave advertisements to them.” “Instead, they [media outlets] started a campaign against the food authority,” DG Usman said.
“We will issue an order for media outlets to publish [PFA’s] press releases exactly as they are issued,” the CJP declared. In addition to that, Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority’s legal adviser undertook before the chief justice that the body will ensure that the orders issued by the court are implemented.
The CJP then accepted the unconditional apology offered to the court by the Gourmet group owners and ordered them to broadcast an apology to the food authority during prime time within two days. He also ordered the food authority to check all products sold by the food company.