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FSSAI directs States to adhere to food labelling rules with special products

Meenakshi Verma Ambwani New Delhi | Updated on August 12, 2020

Includes foods sold for special medical purposes and for special dietary use

Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) on Tuesday directed food safety commissioners across all states and UTs to ensure strict compliance of labelling regulations for foods products that are sold for special medical purposes and foods for special dietary use, among others.

These products are consumed by consumers that suffer from hypo-allergenic conditions such as lactose-intolerance or suffer from IEM disorders (Inborn Errors of Metabolism). Companies making food products for special dietary purposes or for special medical purpose need to ensure the labelling enables the consumers to distinguish such food products from food products meant for normal consumption.

This is the second time this year that the FSSAI has directed food safety commissioners to ensure compliance of norms for food products that are regulated under the FSS ( Health Supplements, nutraceuticals, food for special medical purposes, food for special dietary use, functional foods and novel foods) Regulations, 2016. Earlier it had asked them to ensure such products comply with the RDA norms.

Detailed labels

In its latest order issued on Tuesday, the food safety authority said that food products covered under these regulations are required to comply with general labelling norms under the Food Safety Act as well as additional labelling norms prescribed by the 2016 regulations. The label needs to specify the purpose, the target consumer group and the physiological or disease conditions which they address, recommended duration of use, among other such information.

“Since these products are intended for specific physiological conditions or general maintenance of health and are required to be taken as per regulated usage levels by the specific targeted group, labelling provisions for specific food product categories have also been” notified, FSSAI pointed out in its order. It added that labelling provisions for specific food product categories have also been prescribed in these regulations.

“The label, accompanying leaflet or other labelling and advertisement of each type of article of food, referred to in these regulations shall also provide sufficient information on the nature and purpose of the article of food and detailed instructions and precautions for its use, and the format of information given shall be appropriate for the intended consumers,” it the food safety authority added.

Published on August 12, 2020

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