7 Jul 2024

Make Healthier Decisions: FSSAI Proposes to Enhance Nutritional Labeling for Packaged Foods, See Details

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has approved a significant amendment to the Food Safety and Standards (Labelling and Display) Regulations, 2020. This amendment mandates that nutritional information, specifically Total Sugar, Salt, and Saturated Fat content, be displayed in bold letters and a relatively larger font size on the labels of packaged food items.

The decision was made during the 44th meeting of the Food Authority, chaired by Apurva Chandra, the Chairperson of FSSAI. The primary goal of this amendment is to empower consumers by providing clear and accessible nutritional information, enabling them to make healthier dietary choices.

Public Input Invited

The draft notification for this amendment will soon be released to the public, inviting suggestions and objections. This step ensures transparency and allows stakeholders to contribute their views on the proposed changes.

Under the new regulations, the per serve percentage contribution to Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDAs) for total sugar, saturated fat, and sodium content will be prominently displayed in bold letters. This move is part of a broader effort to enhance public health by promoting better understanding and consumption of healthier food options.

Promoting Public Health and Well-being

By prioritizing clear and distinguishable labeling requirements, the FSSAI aims to support global efforts to combat diseases linked to unhealthy diets. Clear labeling will help consumers identify healthier choices, thereby contributing to improved public health outcomes.

In addition to these labeling changes, the FSSAI has been actively issuing advisories to prevent false and misleading claims by Food Business Operators (FBOs). These include directives to e-commerce websites to remove the term "Health Drink" from certain products and mandating the removal of claims such as "100% fruit juices" from labels when they are not accurate.

Collaborative Effort

The meeting was attended by senior officials from various government ministries, including the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Ministry of Commerce, Ministry of Consumer Affairs, and Food and Public Distribution, as well as representatives from States and Union Territories. Industry associations, consumer organizations, research institutes, and farmers' organizations also participated, reflecting a comprehensive and collaborative approach to improving food safety and labeling standards.

The FSSAI's proactive steps in enhancing nutritional labeling and curbing misleading claims are essential strides towards ensuring that consumers have the necessary information to make informed and healthier dietary choices.

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