6 instant coffee products banned

National 2 minutes, 0 seconds

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN

THE Ministry of Health (MoH) has banned six instant coffee products as they were found to contain sildenafil and tadalafil, which are restricted poisons that can be harmful to an individual’s health.

The findings were a result of tests done by the MoH’s Scientific Services Lab, which found that six products — Kopi Harimau Hari Hari Mau, ADELINE’s Stretchmax Café, Narture Finest’s Brazillian Catuaba, ORI’s Strong Man Coffee, Kopi Perkasa Stevia Sugar and Extreme Energy Coffee — contained toxic substance.

According to the ministry, sildenafil and tadalafil are controlled substances under Section 114 of the 1956 Poison Act, and are used to treat erectile dysfunction which requires prescription and supervision by a doctor.

The side effects of consuming the substances are nausea, vomiting, facial redness and dizziness, while severe cases could lead to a high heart rate, sudden hearing loss and seizures, according to the MoH.

As even the use of the substances in cooking is prohibited under the Public Health (food) Regulations, the ministry explained that it had never authorised the import and sale of the products, and as a result of the findings, the import and sale of the aforementioned products are prohibited in the Sultanate.

The ministry advised those who use, own, import or sell the products, to stop consuming, importing or selling them and hand it over to the Quality Control and Food Safety Division of the Medical Services Department or any health office in the district for it to be destroyed.

Under Section 9 (1) (i) of the Public Health (food) Act (Chapter 182), those who prepare, sell or import the product can face imprisonment of five years, a fine or both, according to the MoH.

The public have also been reminded that it is an offence under Section 17 of the 1956 Poison Act (Chapter 114) to sell any products that contain controlled substances under the Act. Anyone found guilty can be punished with a $8,000 fine or jailed for six months.

The ministry added that those who flout the norm, due to carelessness or otherwise endangering lives of people, may face 12 months’ imprisonment or a $16,000 fine, if found guilty.

Further information regarding the import of food products may be availed by reaching the Quality Control and Food Safety Division at 2331100-05/06/09/10, while information regarding poisonous substances under the Poison Act may be accessed from the Pharmacy Enforcement Division at 2393298 extension 208. - Nadzri Zailani

The Brunei Times