Masvingo City Council has embarked on an operation targeting all unlicensed food vendors in the city.
The council fears that if the selling of food by these vendors is not curbed, there is a huge risk of disease outbreaks.
Masvingo acting chief environmental health officer Mr Ngonidzashe Mapamula said that they have always carried out routine checks but the blitz will be intensified this month. Said Mapamula:
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Our health inspectors are moving around the city fining illegal food outlets and stopping their activities.
We always carry out routine checks, but we intensified the blitz starting this month. We want to protect our residents from diseases.
… Food handling is a critical area, which needs certification according to the Public Health Act as well as Food and Food Standards Act.
Our residents should be fully aware that selling food items without health certificates is a criminal offence and that they risk prosecution.
In terms of the law and standard practice, all premises selling food should be inspected and certified fit before there is any activity.
Illegal vendors in the city have become popular with the general public as they sell sadza at a low price compared to established businesses.