The government is looking to revamp the Food Safety and Standards Act 2006. The Health Ministry has been working on finalising the amendments and efforts are underway to introduce it in the upcoming Parliament session.
Speaking to media persons at the sideline of an event, Health Secretary and FSSAI Chairperson Sudhanshu Pant said that the government is hopeful of bringing the new Food Safety Bill very soon. This Bill will bring a wide range of amendments to the Food Safety and Standards Act 2006. This is being done to ensure food safety regulations are in line with the fast-evolving food ecosystem.
He was speaking at the sidelines of the Eat Right India summit. Pant said FSSAI has framed a comprehensive set of standards for 15 varieties of millets also known as Sri anna. “Adequate quality standards are in place and will boost the consumption of millets,” he added.
Pant said various initiatives have been taken to popularise millets by FSSAI. The Food Safety Authority has signed an MoU with the Ministry of Defence in this regard and similar MoUs are expected to be signed with other Ministries and government departments.
Meanwhile, FSSAI CEO G Kamala Vardhana Rao on Tuesday said that a national survey of milk and milk products is being undertaken across the country. He added that the survey will pick up nearly 10,000 samples and is expected to be completed by next month.
“Surveillance on sweets”
At the same time, FSSAI has asked States to step up surveillance on sweets, milk and milk products keeping in mind the upcoming Diwali season. “Usually, consumption of sweets goes up during the Diwali festival. We have directed our officers in the States and Union territories to intensify the surveillance of sweets and milk products,” he stated at the sidelines of the event. Rao said State Food Safety Commissioners have been asked to take action against non-compliant food business operators.
In fact, FSSAI has directed State Food Safety Commissioners to step up surveillance of products throughout the year. This year surveillance has been ramped up to 1 lakh samples. Rao said by next year the focus will be to ensure nearly 7 lakh samples are picked up for surveillance.