FSSAI Wants Red Color Warning For Food With High Sugar, Fat, Salt; Food Makers Say This Is Not Practical
We have good news for people who watch what they eat! FSSAI will be introducing a new method of labeling packaged food items that will help shoppers identify the amount of fat, sugar and other ingredients that are present in the product.
The FSSAI has been planning to put in place such rules for the last two years, and their intentions are finally taking shape. The increasing rate of diabetes and obesity in India has been the reason behind the FSSAI taking such steps.
The food items will be colour coded and will come with specific name tags. Read on to know all that has been planned by the FSSAI!
Products With High Fat, Sugar, Salt Content Will be Colour Coded Red
FSSAI (Food Safety and Standards Authority of India), has directed that the food distributors who make chips, soups, biscuits, juices, and other packaged products will have to display a red colour coding on the packaging of the food, which will notify the eaters that the food contains high levels of sugar, salt or fat.
Packaged food companies will be required to mention the number of calories, saturated fat, trans-fat, added sugar and sodium that is present per serving in the food. FSSAI is also discussing levying a ‘fat tax’ on the ‘junk food’.
Along with this, the FSSAI has also introduced some new rules that are as follows:
- Allergens, Veg, Non-veg food will be labelled compulsorily.
- The food which is not for human consumption will come with a [X] mark.
- There will be an internal mechanism set up that will resolve any issues regarding the implementation/interpretation of regulations.
Food Industries Unhappy With New Norms
Members of the All India Food Processors’ Association (AIFPA) are not happy with the new rules, and are ‘not scientific enough neither practical to be implemented’. Top packaged food distributors, such as Bikanerwala, Tops and Haldiram, are some of the members of AIFPA.
Saurabh Jindal, President of the AIFPA, said, “The salt, sugar and fat content of packaged food depends on the taste requirement of the consumer and is not manufacturers’ choice. It is recommended that the authority should instead focus on awareness generation of consumer about balanced diet and suitability of different foods as per one’s lifestyle.”
Having said that, the move by FSSAI is indeed commendable, because eating habits of Indians have deteriorated in the last few years, and this is giving rise to diseases such as diabetes and high blood pressure.
India is, right now, the diabetes capital of the world, with 50 million Indians suffering from type-2 diabetes.
Kerala has already imposed 14% ‘fat tax’ on such junk foods, and it is high time that a similar protocol be applied pan-India.
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