Food Safety News – India updates – Jan 6

GENERAL

 
Food regulator FSSAI has sought public comments on draft standards for fortification of seven food items – salt, oil, milk, vanaspati, atta, maida and rice. 
Fortification is the addition of key vitamins and minerals such as iron, iodine, zinc, Vitamin A & D to staple foods such as rice, milk and salt to improve their nutritional content.
“We had formulated a comprehensive regulation on food fortification. The draft guidelines were operationalised in October in public interest. Now, a gazette notification has been issued seeking public comments within 30 days,” Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) CEO Pawan Kumar Agarwal told PTI. 
He said a final guidelines would be issued after taking into consideration the public comments. 
FSSAI has invited suggestions and objections from the stakeholders within a period of 30 days from the date of publication of the draft notification on ‘Food Safety and Standards (Fortification of Foods) Regulations, 2016’. 
The gazette notification was issued on December 23 and uploaded today on FSSAI’s website. 
The guideline prescribe the standards for fortification of salt, oil, milk, vanaspati, atta, maida and rice. 
“The control of micronutrient deficiencies is an essential part of the overarching effort of the Government to fight hunger and malnutrition in the country,” FSSAI said. 
Food fortification is a simple, proven, cost effective and complementary strategy that has been used across the globe to safely and effectively prevent vitamin and mineral deficiencies, it added. 
As per this regulation, fortified food should bear the logo as prescribed. The regulations also provide for specific role of FSSAI in promotion for food fortification. 
FSSAI has set standards for fortification of salt with iodine and iron; of vegetable oil and milk with Vitamin A and D; wheat flour and rice with iron, folic acid, zinc, vitamin B12, vitamin A and some other micronutrients.

ANDAMAN & NICOBAR ISLANDS

Food Safety Team conducts raids in city

 
Port Blair :
A  team of Food Safety Officers Shri A. Khalid, Smt. S. Nisha, Smt. Sarina Nadeem attached to Food Safety Unit, South Andaman conducted surprised inspection at Municipal Market, Opposite Marine Dockyard and found Shri. M. Bhagyaraj, S/o late Muniyandi R/o Nayagaon carrying illegal activities by selling of IMFL items at shop No. 3 and 4 which is allotted to Shri. V. Seeralan R/o Kamaraj Nagar for running petty shop. It is learnt that Shri. M. Bhagyaraj starts selling IMFL items from wee hours. The shop 3 and 4 has been sealed.
Meanwhile on 03.01.2017, a team of Food Safety Officers Shri. A. Khalid, Shri. Tahseen Ali, Shri. R.V. Murugaraj, Shri. S.S. Santhosh and Shri. Ravi Kumar, Helper inspected M/s Lulu Shopping Mall, Aberdeen Bazaar owned by Shri. P.P. Saidalvi and found that the FBO was selling imported confectionary and chocolates without obtaining license under FSS Act’2006 or importer license under Law. The FBO has also failed to submit any valid documents regarding regulatory clearance from FSSAI for selling imported goods in India.
Both the above FBOs and persons have been booked under relevant sections of FSS Act’2006. The matter is been taken up for adjudication in the Court of Additional District Magistrate, South Andaman.
KERALA

Unniyappam ban: Minister slams food safety dept

Thiruvananthapuram: The food safety department’s order to stop the sale and distribution of unniyappam as prasadam at Sabarimala was ‘most inappropriate and a decision which has crossed all the limits’, said devaswom minister Kadakampally Surendran.
The order, on the ground that they were not fit for human consumption, comes at the fag-end of the pilgrim season with just another two weeks left for Makaravilaku, which raises suspicion about the very motive behind it, the minster told reporters here on Tuesday. “The appams are made of rice and ghee brought by the pilgrims in their irumudikkettu, which definitely will be of high quality. And they are prepared strictly adhering to the food safety standards,” he said.
The minister said that the restrictions were being imposed based on a high court verdict in the past, which said not to use items brought by pilgrims in their irumudikkettu to make prasadam. “The government has directed the Travancore Devaswom Board to approach the high court to get the order revoked. Besides, we have appealed to the food safety commissioner to withdraw the restriction,” he said.
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