Moonshine factory shut down in Faro

AN ESTABLISHMENT in Faro, which had been illegally producing liqueurs and brandy, was shut down last week by the Autoridade de Segurança Alimentar e Económica (ASAE), the authority responsible for food safety and economic activities.

The closure was ordered after the ASAE discovered that the establishment was secretly producing the alcoholic drinks without holding a licence. According to the press statement, ASAE has instigated proceedings against the owners of the establishment, which had already been closed once last year.

Twenty boxes, each containing 12 bottles of almond liqueur, packed and ready for sale, were seized, as well as thousands of litres of pure alcohol. Inspectors also confiscated millions of false stamps with the logo of the Direcção-Geral de Fiscalização e Controlo da Qualidade Alimentar, the entity formerly responsible for licensing food and drink products.

‘Operation Easter’

Meanwhile, over the Easter period, ASAE has been busy investigating two activities in particular – the production of food with eggs and the secret killing of animals and their trade.

Fifty-six teams from ASAE were involved in ‘Operação Páscoa’, which comprised inspections at 303 establishments spread throughout Portugal. The operation resulted in five arrests (in central Portugal), the registration of 57 offences and the instigation of seven criminal proceedings.

Two commercial bakeries making typical Easter products using eggs, such as folares and almond cakes, were shut down as well as an illegal abattoir, all three of which were in the Algarve. The seven criminal processes relate to faulty products, falsification of official brands and the illegal killing of animals.

The offences related, in the main, to lack of sanitation and hygiene, machinery and the failure to supply a complaints book.