If you are in the food business, be careful with what you use to secure your food packaging.

This is because using dangerous materials such as nails or staples could leave you RM10,000 poorer, or worse, behind bars for up to two years.

Health director-general Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah, in a statement yesterday, said that traders can be charged in court for the offence under Regulation 36 of the Food Hygiene Regulations 2009, and face a heavier punishment if the said material is found in the food, under Section 13 of the Food Act 1983.

The hefty punishment include a fine not exceeding RM100,000, or imprisonment of not more than 10 years, or both, upon conviction.

Noor Hisham's statement comes following a recent case involving a young child, who had to be rushed to the hospital after accidentally ingesting a nail used to secure a pack of rice.

"An X-ray found that the nail had reached his stomach and an emergency surgery was done to remove the nail. This is an example of an unwanted accident that could happen if a foreign object is found in our food," a post on the Public Health Malaysia Facebook page had said on Dec 31 last year.

Noor Hisham further urged traders to use safer methods to pack their food, and parents to check on the food given to their children.

If any food is seen secured with nails or staples, consumers can contact their state or district healtn departments or offices, or lodge a complaint via the Health Ministry's website or the Food Safety and Quality Division's Facebook page, he noted.

Photo source: Facebook