Any seller of organic food either exclusively or as part of their retail merchandise shall display such food in a manner distinguishable from the display of conventional food so that the consumers are not misled
FSSAI sets labelling and certification norms; violations to attract penalty
The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has proposed stricter norms for organic food in the country to address the issues of traceability. As part of the draft regulations, it has proposed that traceability should be established at the producer level for accuracy of organic status claims of the products. The regulator has now sought comments from the stakeholders before it finalises these regulations. Labelling norms
The draft regulations have also specified labelling and certification norms for organic food products so that the full and accurate information on the organic status of the product is conveyed to consumers. “Such product shall carry a certification/quality assurance mark of one of the systems” that certify organic food, it added. The regulator said that any food promoted as organic should comply with the provisions of the National Programme for Organic Production or Participatory Guarantee System for India, besides any other system or standards that it may notify in the future. “Any seller of organic food either exclusively or as part of their retail merchandise shall display such food in a manner distinguishable from the … conventional food so that the consumers are not misled,” the draft regulations stated.Penal provisions
The regulator has also said that non-compliance of these regulations will attract penal provisions and is liable for action as a false, misleading or deceptive claim.
“The Food Authority may establish appropriate institutional mechanism to implement these regulations and promote authentic organic food in the country,” the draft regulations added.
Separately, FSSAI has also urged the food business operators to establish a robust and effective system for redressing consumer complaints in the food sector.
In a statement, Pawan Agarwal, CEO, FSSAI said that the food safety authority will soon come up with quantifiable metrics to accurately gauge the performance and efficiency of each food business operator vis-a-vis their resolution of consumer complaints.