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The medical academia charged that since 2012, over 900 containers of crude palm oil containing toxic material had been imported from Malaysia by several leading private companies.

Head of the Department of Pharmacology of the Faculty of Medicine and Allied Sciences of the Rajarata University of Sri Lanka, Dr. Channa Jayasumana also added that the said palm oil had been discarded in Malaysia following purification as it was deemed unfit for human consumption, and had subsequently been labelled by their Customs as crude palm oil.

Once consignments of crude palm oil are brought down here, it is mixed with several chemicals and coconut oil and is used in the cooking and frying of food stuffs like wade, gram and koththu roti, he noted, adding that the presence of an aroma could also be detected.

There are still 24 containers at the Customs, he mentioned.

“The fatty acids in this are not good for us. They cause diseases like coronary artery disease and cerebrovascular disease. The composition of the blood, its viscosity, changes along with changes in the vessels carrying blood to the brain. In short, this may result in heart attacks and paralysis. If this continues non-communicable diseases will only increase,” he observed.