Catania: Nightmare dairy discovered and seized in San Cristoforo

An illegal dairy was discovered in the historic San Cristoforo district of Catania by carabinieri from the Nipaaf, the investigative unit for environmental, agri-food, and forestry crimes, who reported two individuals, aged 22 and 23, for fraud in commercial activities, aggravated theft of electricity, selling of non-genuine food substances, as well as unauthorized discharge of industrial waste. The operation was conducted in collaboration with the military police of the Piazza Dante station and the Nas, as well as with the support of personnel from Noras, the agri-food unit of the Sicilian Regional Forestry Corps.

In the premises of the structure, the two young men, who were later reported, were found producing ricotta and cheeses for sale. The floor was covered with whey and production residues that were being discharged into a hole in the ground and from there, directly into a drainage ditch without authorization. In an adjacent room, about a hundred forms of salted ricotta were arranged for drying and aging, not in a refrigerated environment but with two fans. In a fridge, a carcass of an animal, likely a lamb, was found without any traceability, as well as the milk used for cheese production.

Technicians from Enel also intervened on the spot and confirmed that the building and an adjacent one, both in the possession of the two illegal cheese makers, were illegally connected to the electric grid. An illegal connection was also discovered in another location, made by a relative. For this reason, the closure of the illegal activity was ordered, as well as the seizure of the dairy facility, equipment, and the cheeses, weighing over 300 kg, along with 350 liters of milk. The food could not be donated to charity because they were classified as non-edible.

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