Rs 10 Lakh fine, life term imposed for food adulteration


The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India(FSSAI) has proposed stringent punishment of fine of Rs 10 lakh and imprisonment up to life term for those adulterating foodstuff. Besides, the regulator has also suggested creating a ‘Food Safety and Nutrition Fund’ to support promotional and outreach activities among food businesses and consumers.
The proposals are part of key changes recommended by FSSAI to amend the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006. The draft proposal, reviewed by TOI , recommended a new section in the FSS Act – Section 59 – that would lead to punishment for seven years, which can be extended up to life imprisonment besides a fine of Rs 10 lakh if individuals or businesses intentionally add adulterants to food products.
The punishment will apply irrespective of the adulteration causing actual injury to consumers.
Officials said the provisions have been proposed in the wake of increasing instances of food adulteration, which are impacting people’s health.
The regulator has sought feedback from state governments on the proposal. It also suggested a fund to undertake special programmes on food safety and nutrition.

FSAT upholds judgement of Adjudication Officers

Jammu Tawi, Jun 14
In a landmark Judgment announced by the Food Safety Appellate Tribunal, Jammu under Food Safety & Standards Act,2006 , the Court has upheld the judgments pronounced by Adjudicating Officers of District Samba and Udhampur in the Cases titled Food Safety Officer Samba V/s Fill industries Ltd SIDCO, Electronic Complex Rangreth-Srinagar & Others, Food Safety Officer Udhampur V/S M/s Sarveshwar Organic Food Ltd-Jammu wherein a fine of Rs Five Lacs Fifty Thousand have been imposed on the accused parties. 
The Cases were pleaded by Adv Chowdhary Mohammad Ayoub who appeared for the Department before the Food Safety Appellate Tribunal Jammu. It is pertinent to mention here that during last year; 1921 statutory samples of various food articles were lifted from Jammu Province wherein 564 samples were found in contravention of FSSA. 
Accordingly, Legal action was initiated against the defaulter companies. Out of which 497 cases have been decided and fine amounting to Rs 45,14,600 have been imposed on the violators.

TN : Rs 2.5 lakh fine imposed on ‘dead chicken’ sellers

The district administration has imposed a total of Rs 2.5 lakh fine on three people who tried to sell dead chickens in the city.
Velliyangiri and M Radhakrishnan were caught red-handed when they were transporting dead chicken near Veerapandi on December 15. It was found that they would buy dead chicken from poultry farms in and around Palladam, and clean them at their houses at Kallangadu before selling masala-mixed meat to roadside food stalls. Subsequently, they were booked under the Food Safety and Standards Act.
Following this, the district revenue officer and additional district magistrate S Prasanna Ramasamy imposed Rs 1 lakh fine on the violators recently.
In another case, P Arumugam of MS Garden in Palladam was found selling dead chicken. He was also booked under the Food Safety and Standards Act and was slapped a fine of Rs 1.5 lakh.
Meanwhile, FSDA designated officer to Tirupur K Tamil Selvan said, “The administration was committed to increase vigil on such violations. Heavy fines will be slapped on violators. The people should alert the food safety and drug administration department if they come across such cases. The department could be reached through WhatsApp too.”

J&K : Rs 1.40 lakh fine imposed on 12 food traders

The court of Adjudicating Officer (Addl Deputy Commissioner), Vikas Kundal, imposed a fine of Rs 1,40,000 on food business operators for allegedly selling sub-standard and misbranded food items.
Against whom the action has been taken by the Department of Drug and Food Control Organisation are: Mustard Oil manufacturer namely Vishal Goel Prop. of M/s PD Foods Punjab and spurious Groundnut Chakki manufacturer namely-Danish Sidique operating from Safa Kadal who have been slapped a fine of Rs 40,000 and Rs 30,000, respectively.
Meanwhile, 40 fresh cases have been instituted by the Food Safety wing of Drugs and Food Control Orgnisation in the court of Adjudicating Officer Srinagar against various food business operators for violating different provisions of Food Safety and Standards Act.

Erring traders fined Rs 160000 in Budgam


District Administration Budgam have realized a fine of Rs 1.6 lakh from various shopkeepers, wholesale dealers, distributors and manufacturers for selling adulterated, sub-standard and misbranded food items in different markets across the district, against the Food Safety and Standard Act-2006 (FSSA).
ADC Budgam Mohammad Farooq Dar said that the fine of Rs 1.6 lakh has been realized from the erring businessmen during last nine months after the food item samples collected from the market were found in contravention of the FSSA-2006.
He said the samples include tea, sweets, suji, milk, bakery, spices and other food products, which were collected from the different markets by the food safety officers.
Taking immediate action against the erring shopkeepers, fine was imposed against each shopkeeper and manufacturer for failing to live up to the food safety standards and selling food items in breach of FSS Act-2006.
The penalties on the erring businessmen were imposed by Additional Deputy Commissioner, Budgam Mohammad Farooq Dar as Adjudicating Officer of FSSA Budgam under section 51/52 of FSS Act-2006.
Meanwhile, Adjudicating Officer directed FSS officers to conduct regular checkups and continue collection of samples from the markets for lab testing to ensure that no sub-standard or adulterated food items are being sold anywhere in the market at the risk of the life of consumers.
Besides, Adjudicating Officer also said that no shopkeeper or manufacturer would be allowed to indulge in such illegal practices, selling food products harmful for the human consumption.
He said that action would be taken against the shopkeeper for failing to maintain hygienic sale of food items.
Authorities further imposed a penalty of suspension of license as recovery of the amount as arrears of land revenue as per Section-96 of the Act on the erring shopkeeper incase he fails to deposit the penalty amount within the specified time. Besides, the accused is also directed not to repeat the practice of selling misbranded food items and comply the provision the provision of FSSA-2006.

Maggi makers Nestle , distributors fined 62 lakhs in UP

Nestle India was forced to withdraw Maggi from the market and stop production in June after the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India banned the instant noodle brand saying it was ‘unsafe and hazardous’ for consumption. File  

It “appears to be a case of application of incorrect standards,” says Nestle India spokesperson.

Multinational giant Nestle is under the scanner once again as it has been fined ₹45 lakh after samples of its product Maggi tested as “sub-standard” in a district of Uttar Pradesh.

Apart from the ₹45 lakh fine imposed on Nestle, the Shahjahanpur administration has also imposed a fine of ₹17 lakh on the six distributors of the company, making the total ₹62 lakh.

Shahjahanpur Additional District Magistrate Jitendra Kumar Sharma confirmed the administration’s decision to The Hindu. “In total there were seven cases. The samples tested by the Food and Safety department of the district were found to be sub-standard,” Mr. Sharma said.

Responding to the fine, a Nestle India spokesperson said it “appears to be a case of application of incorrect standards.”

The company will file an appeal once it receives the order from the U.P. administration.

“We strongly reiterate that Maggi Noodles are 100% safe for consumption. While we have not received the orders passed by the adjudication officer, we have been informed that the samples are of year 2015 and the issue pertains to ‘ash content’ in Noodles,” the spokesperson said.

“In 2015, Nestlé India and other companies had represented to the relevant authorities, via industry associations, to set standards specific to instant noodles to avoid confusion amongst enforcement officers and consumers. The standards have since been introduced and the product complies with these standards. We regret the confusion it may cause to consumers.”

Tribunal upheld fine on sub standard skimmed milk powder case

The food safety appellate tribunal in Kashmir has upheld fine of rupees four lakh imposed by a food adjudicating officer on a Madhya Pradesh-based company after analysis reports attested its skimmed milk powder samples as substandard.
Presiding officer of FSAT Kashmir Muhammad Yousuf Akhoon upheld the order of the adjudicating food officer Anantnag against Sterling Agro Industries Limited, the manufactures of NOVA brand of skimmed milk powder. 
“The sample of skimmed milk powder NOVA sample has been found of substandard quality since it contained less protein content and higher ash content than the prescribed limit,” the Tribunal said.
While the Tribunal held that the skimmed milk powder was admittedly meant for distribution among different Anganwadi centers of district Anantnag, it said the company cannot escape its liability as it is the manufacturer of this skimmed milk powder that was meant for human consumption, ‘more-so by children who are prone to be affected even by the slightest adulteration in food product,”
The company had approached the Tribunal in appeal against the order of adjudicating officer food safety Anantnag who had imposed the fine on the company after a Punjab-based accredited laboratory and Kolkata-based referral laboratory declared NOVA brand of skimmed milk powder samples as substandard. 
After the officer had inspected stores of ICDS project Anantnag, he lifted samples from the stocked skimmed milk powder packets that were meant for distribution among different Anganwadi centers in the district and supplied by Nazir Ahmad Kawa. 
Four parts of the skimmed milk powder (one kilogram each) bearing batch no (HR 15) and manufacturing address of M/S Sterling Agro Industries Limited Ghironji Industries Area, Malanpur District (MP), were taken as samples in keeping with the procedure laid down under Section 47 of FSS Act, 2006. 
For detection of any violation of the provisions of FSS Act, one part of the sample was sent to a lab food analyst Kashmir and the second part to accredited laboratory—Punjab Biotechnology Incubator, Mohali, Punjab. 
The other two parts of the sample were handed over to the designated officer food safety and standards Anantnag.
While the food analyst Kashmir declared the sample as of standard quality, the Punjab-based accredited lab declared it as sub-standard in violation of the FSS Act. After the reports of the two laboratories were at variance, the second part of the sample was sent to a referral laboratory in Kolkata for final opinion.
The referral laboratory declared the sample of sub-standard quality on the basis of detection of less protein and higher ash content than the prescribed limits.
During the investigation, it was revealed that Kawa had purchased the skimmed milk powder from M/S Sterling Agro Industries Limited, the manufacturer of the food product.
The food safety officer placed the compliant before the adjudicating officer food safety (additional deputy commissioner Anantnag) and he imposed a fine of Rs 4 lakh on the company after coming to the conclusion that its skimmed milk product was substandard. 
“The report of referral laboratory Kolkata is to be taken as final in keeping with FSS Act,” the Tribunal said, dismissing the appeal as devoid of merit. 
Meanwhile, the Tribunal ordered that the amount of penalty recovered from the appellant company which stands deposited in FDR with J&K Bank, branch old secretariat, be deposited in the government treasury along with the interest after the period of appeal is over.