Safety: Following the recent temporary ban on import of beans and cauliflower due to chemical contents beyond permissible limit, the Bhutan Agriculture and Food Regulatory Authority (BAFRA) is continuously testing vegetables and fruits in Phuentsholing.

As of yesterday, BAFRA officials in Phuentsholing tested 18 varieties of imported vegetables and 16 different fruits. So far, everything is on track and the authority did not have to send the samples to determine permissible limits to Thimphu.

The authority has carried out 150 rapid tests for chemical content.

The officer in charge at the BAFRA office in Phuentsholing, Phuntsho, said that BAFRA is conducting constant tests of chemical residues.

“We are also monitoring the import. All varieties have been tested,” he said.

The import permit system that the regulatory authority introduced recently has also helped screen banned vegetables and ascertain the import volumes on a daily basis. Importers must submit the volume and type of vegetables and fruits that they want to import.

A total of 417,349kg cabbage was imported last week, according to figures maintained by BAFRA.

Vendors have been complying with BAFRA officials and not selling imported beans and cauliflower.

Rajesh Rai | Phuentsholing