FSSAI needs an energy shot to regulate processed food

Context: Recently, the social media influencer drawn into the Cadbury’s Bournvita controversy has a supporter. The Nutrition Advocacy in Public Interest — India (NAPi), a think tank working on nutrition policy, has issued a statement saying it stands by him.

What is the controversy?

  • Revant Himatsingka, who calls himself @foodpharmer on social media, with 1,35,000 followers on Instagram, drew the ire of Mondelez India, the company that owns Bournvita, with his April 1 video in which he flagged the product’s high sugar content.
  • In January, the NAPi said that a Bournvita advertisement and product packaging was misleading and did not disclose the sugar content.
  • The organisation has filed a formal complaint with the Department of Consumers Affairs, working under the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution.
  • It alleges the ads violate the provision of the Consumer Protection Act, 2019.
  • However, this has brought to the boil the real issue at hand — the Food Standards and Safety Authority of India (FSSAI) dragging its feet over implementing its own guidelines to regulate packaged and processed food.

Packaging and labelling regulations of FSSAI

As per the food safety and standards (packaging and labelling) regulations, 2011, FSSAI regulations are a complete set of guidelines that all food product brands and manufacturers should abide by. It also inflicts 12 fundamental labelling regulations for any food packaging as given below; –

  • Food’s name
  • Ingredients list
  • Information related to nutrition
  • Vegetarian or non-vegetarian declaration of food
  • Food additives used in the declaration
  • Manufacturer’s name and address
  • Details for customer care
  • Quantity
  • Retail price rate
  • FSSAI license number and logo
  • Batch identification number, country of origin, marketing date
  • Instructions for usage.

What is the permissible limit of sugar content?

  • The threshold for sugar to avoid warning labels is 6 g per 100 g.
  • In 2020, the FSSAI looked into 1,306 product samples across 30 food companies, including dairy, confectionery, sweets and snacks.  None of the products could meet the requirements.
  • Hence a panel constituted by FSSAI then proposed increasing the threshold arbitrarily by six times i.e., 36-gram sugar per 100 grams.
  • Despite this, only 20% of products were found to be meeting the new threshold.

Practice MCQ

Which of the following components must be written on the packaged food as per the Packaging and labelling regulations of FSSAI?

1.      Ingredients list

2.      Vegetarian or non-vegetarian declaration of food

3.      Food additives used in the declaration

4.      Details for customer care

5.      Manufacturer’s name and address

Select the correct answer using code given below

(a)    1, 2 and 3 only

(b)   1, 2, 3 and 4 only

(c)    2, 3, 4 and 5 only

(d)   1, 2, 3, 4 and 5

Ans. D

Source: The Hindu

One thought on “FSSAI needs an energy shot to regulate processed food

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The maximum upload file size: 20 MB. You can upload: image, document, archive, other. Drop files here

Online Counselling
Table of Contents
Today's Current Affairs
This is default text for notification bar