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Exemption in purchase of loose edible oils extended for one year

BHOPAL: Ahead of the implementation of food security act from Tuesday, Madhya Pradesh government once again extended its exemption on the purchase of loose edible oils for a year.

A government press release said it was for the convenience of poor people, specially daily earners and labourers, the state government

It said the state government has taken this decision in public interest in exercise of the power conferred by Food Security and Standards (Prohibition and Restrictions on Sales) Regulations, 2011.

It is noteworthy that poor people of the state still purchase loose edible oils out of the payment of wages on daily basis. Common man specially those belonging to labour class cannot purchase packed oil. Therefore, a prohibition on the sale of loose oil shall make their lives troublesome. The period has been extended in view of this, according to a press release.

Last year, after getting the notification from the health ministry, the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) had further extended the licensing and registration deadline for Food Business Operators (FBOs) to February 4, 2014. It was the third time the country’s apex food regulator has granted an extension to FBOs

Please wash your hands, Mr Street food vendor

Even though the city fumes over the unhygienic practices of street food vendors, some say the ones in Koramangala can set an example for the rest to follow

Remember “Emploice Muswasands” from Sacha Baron Cohen’s The Dictator? Well, street food vendors in India have been told to do just that: must wash hands. While hard core street food lovers would agree that cheap, roadside fast food doesn’t taste the same in a hygienic food court without the street dust and grime, the next-gen Indian is becoming increasingly conscious of the hygiene levels.

India has sported a long history of street food peddlers where a weekend outing for children would be to the nearest pani puri wallah. So the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) along with National Association of Street Vendors of India (NASVI) have begun training sessions for street food vendors in the country to help them become more hygienic.

Detergent found in packaged milk

Srinagar, Dec 17: After the expose of spurious drug scam in Kashmir, it has now come to fore that a leading brand of packaged milk available in Kashmir market contains detergent.

An official report accessed by Greater Kashmir reveals that Central Food Laboratory Kolkata has confirmed the presence of detergent in a sample of milk lifted from Kashmir. The sample was tested in the laboratory on November 25 this year.
The laboratory report states that the sample has also failed to conform to various other standards stipulated under laws and regulations.
“The sample does not conform to the standards as laid down under Regulation no. 2.1.1(1) of  Food Safety and Standards (Food Products and Food Additive) Regulations, 2011, since the sample shows milk fat and B.R. at 40 C (Extracted fat) lower than the prescribed limit,” the report states.
“It also contravenes regulation no. 2.2.2(10) and 2.2.2.4 (iii) of Food Safety and Standards (Packing and Labeling) Regulations, 2011, for not mentioning best-before date and symbol of veg. food on the label,” it adds.
The report terms the sample as “sub-standard, unsafe and misbranded.”
In 2012, a survey by Food Safety Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) revealed that 80 per cent of milk sold in Jammu and Kashmir contains adulterants.
Out of 18 samples picked up from different parts of the State by the FSSAI, 15 were found contaminated with glucose and skimmed milk powder.
The samples were tested as part of a survey to ascertain the quality of milk and identify different type of adulteration the liquid milk throughout India.
Only yesterday, Fennel (Saunf) powder manufactured by a leading local company was found containing coloring agents Carmoisine and Tartrazine that are unsafe for human health.
Earlier this year, several medicines supplied to government hospitals were found of sub-standard quality.

Food safety rules to be implemented by Feb 2014

GUWAHATI: The state health and family welfare department has urged all food business operators in the state to implement the guidelines of the Food Safety and Standards Act (FSS), 2006, before February 4, 2014. Accordingly, all operators will have to acquire food licenses and register before the deadline.

The measure will help the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India, an agency of the Union ministry of health and family welfare, protect and promote public health through the regulation and supervision of food safety.

“It will be helpful for us to trace vendors for any follow-up action and address the needs of consumers. It will also help maintain a record of vendors. Introduction of good manufacturing practices and good hygienic practices is another aspect of this act,” said Samiran Baruah, food safety officer.

Karnataka to bring legislation to control adulterated milk production

The state government is all set bring in a legislation to punish the guilty dealing with adulterated milk supply.

Following Supreme Court’s observation on December 5, the law and health are meeting on Thursday to discuss the modalities and set the ball rolling for the legislation. Law minister TB Jayachandra told reporters on Monday that necessary amendments to the existing or a fresh law would be introduced. “Milk coming from other states, supplied in border areas are reported of adulteration. Government will strictly deal with this,” he said.

The SC has asked state governments to make necessary amendments to their laws to make production and marketing of adulterated milk, which is injurious to human consumption, an offence punishable with life.

Equinox Consulting: FSSAI – empanelled Training Partner

FSSAI Trainings or ‘Food Safety Training and Certification‘ (FoSTaC) Trainings as known, is an initiative by FSSAI which Food Safety Regulations and Policies can be taught to maximum Food Businesses.

Food Safety Training and Certification (FoSTaC) Programme is conceptualised by FSSAI to create awareness and maintain uniformity across the training courses.

It is now mandatory for every Food  Business Operator (FBO) to have at least one Food Safety Supervisor (FSS) trained under the FoSTaC Programme.

Equinox Consulting facilitates these FoSTaC Trainings to Food Handlers, on behalf of the official FoSTaC team.

For more details about the Food Safety Training Programme, Visit: www.fostactraining.com

To get in touch with our Training Team, contact Ms. Sayali Dawane on +91 98336 13377 or training@equinoxconsulting.co.in.

FSSAI labeling issue hits packaged food imports hard

It is not just your favourite imported chocolate that went missing from shop shelves this festive season. Crispies such as Pringles, gourmet cheese, olive oil, biscuits, noodles, pasta, jams, honey, oats, sauces… you name it… were hardly to be found this Diwali as the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), the country’s apex regulator, came down heavily on importers overlabeling issues.

Government sources indicate that packaged foods worth over Rs 750-1,000 crore were stuck at various ports and airports across the country as the food safety regulator insisted that importers desist from using stickers on food products to indicate crucial details such as the product type, price and nutritional value.
What’s worse? The stand-off, on for the last three months, shows no signs of abating, as FSSAI refuses to budge from its position. “FSSAI’s move is in line with the law, and all companies – be it Indian or foreign – should comply with it. Stickers are temporary measures. When our norms are clearly laid out, companies must print them on the packs that are to be shipped to India,” an FSSAI official when contacted said. He declined to be quoted given the sensitivity of the matter.
But importers, irked by the lacklustre Diwali sales, say that if the issue is not sorted out soon enough could impact business during Christmas and New Year too. Almost 50-55% of packaged food imports in India happen during the festive season, since it is utilised mainly for gifting purposes besides consumption.
Amit Lohani, convenor, Forum of Indian Food Importers, a body of food importers in the country, says FIFI has already made numerous representations to FSSAI in a bid to resolve the issue. “On October 31, FSSAI came out with a notification agreeing to one of our demands, which is to allow the food safety logo on a sticker. This is with immediate effect,” Lohani, who imports confectionary, snacks and coffee among other products, said.

Food safety not in unsafe hands

NEW DELHI: Despite their doubtful hygiene, it is hard to resist the golgappas, aloo tikkis, ram laddoos, momos, etc., sold on the roadside. Though Food Safety and Standards Authority of India has formulated guidelines to regulate this unorganized sector, Delhi government has failed to effectively implement them. Now, the street vendors, themselves, are coming together to ensure acceptable standards of food quality and hygiene.

In a first-of-its-kind initiative, National Association of Street Vendors of India has launched a catering service to be run and managed by street vendors. “If street vendors want to be taken serious, they will have to stand united. This initiative will give street vendors an opportunity to expand their base. Through this, we can keep a check on the quality of food served and hygiene standards maintained by street vendors,” NASVI president Arbind Singh said.

On Monday, NASVI organized a large scale workshop on hygiene and food safety for street vendors. Street vendors from across the city were taught ways to maintain food quality and also informed about how this will help boost their income. “There is a need to create awareness about food safety among public and street vendors. If customers demand it, they will be forced to maintain hygiene. This will result in increase in their monthly income as they can charge more for providing good quality food,” said K Chandramouli, chairperson, FSSAI, who inaugurated the workshop.

Delhi was one of the first states to implement the Food Safety and Standards Act 2006. But sources in FSSAI claim it has failed to deliver the goods. “There are many states which have done a lot of work to streamline street food vendors. But Delhi has not done much,” said a senior official.

Food Safety and Standards Authority of India to conduct periodic checks of soft drinks

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The Supreme Court on Tuesday directed the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) to monitor and conduct periodic checks of all carbonated soft drinks as the issue relates to citizens’ fundamental right to life guaranteed under the Constitution.

A bench of justices K S Radhakrishnan and A K Sikri passed the direction while disposing of a PIL that had sought constitution of a separate panel to regulate soft drinks to protect citizens from their “deleterious effects”.

“The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India will conduct periodic checks of the carbonated drinks,” the bench said, adding the matter relates to the fundamental right to life guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution.

The apex court had on December 13, 2012, reserved its order on a PIL filed in 2004 for setting up a committee to evaluate the alleged harmful effects of soft drinks on human health and to properly label the beverages, detailing their ingredients.

Worms found in sandwich served on Air India flight

The incident occurred on Air India flight (AI102) with a Rajouri Garden resident who asked for a sandwich and was served an infested one, sources said.

The incident occurred on Air India flight (AI102) with a Rajouri Garden resident who asked for a sandwich and was served an infested one, sources said.

NEW DELHI: An Air India flier got the shock of his life when he found worms in the sandwichserved to him on a New York-Delhi flight.
The incident occurred on Air India flight (AI102) with a Rajouri Garden resident who asked for a sandwich and was served an infested one, sources said.
He complained with Air India authorities at the airport after arriving in Delhi on September 28, but claimed to have not received a response for a fortnight about the action taken in that regard.
When asked, an Air India spokesperson said that “suitable action had already been taken against the caterer”.
He termed the incident as “very rare” and said, “We get our food prepared by the best caterers under very hygienic conditions”, adding that Air India follows the “strictest procedure” for selecting a caterer.

Equinox Labs introduces link between FSSA & pest control at India Pest

Equinox-Labs-New-Logo-1Equinox Labs introduces link between FSSA & pest control at India Pest

India Pest 2013 – a three day event that took place in Hyderabad recently – was hosted by Stelson Quadros, secretary, Indian Pest Control Association (IPCA). Ashwin Bhadri, head, business relations, Equinox Laboratories in mumbai, spoke about the introduction to the Food Safety and Standards Act (FSSA), 2006, and its co-relation to pest control and pest management. At the session, which was pest control experts, he spoke about the opportunities that lie within the pest control industry.

Speakers from Bayer and Intensive Pest Control Pvt Ltd made presentations. Jason Nash of Bayer moderated a panel discussion on bio-control in termite management. The panelists included Dr Shrinivas, Dr Ashish and Dr K Malla. Ganesh spoke about fumigation and its importance to the Indian economy. The highlight of the post-lunch session was a networking and stall visit, with closing comments by D D K Sharma, additional plant protection advisor, Plant Quarantine Division.

The first session of the afternoon was titled ‘BASF and professional pest management’. It was delivered by Hans Athaide, development and regulatory affairs manager, Pest Control Solutions, Asia Pacific, BASF South East Asia Pvt Ltd, Singapore. It was followed by a panel discussion titled ‘Efficacy of rodent repellers’.

Food security & regulations discussed at 7th essay of Food World India

The seventh edition of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry’s (FICCI) Food World India seminar commenced on Monday at Mumbai’s The Lalit. The theme of the seminar, which focussed on food security and regulations in the country, was ‘Feeding a billion: The role of the food processing industry’.

A report on the same was released at the event by Krishna Byre Gowda, Karnataka’s minister of agriculture and food processing; D K Samantaray, chief executive officer, Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), and Siraj Hussain, secretary, ministry of food processing industries (MoFPI).

Addressing the stakeholders, Samantaray said, “When someone from the industry asked me what I know about oil, I answered that I know only about the oil I use for my car. Likewise, the only thing I know about food is the food I eat. And as FSSAI chief, my job is to ensure a better quality of food quality to the 120 billion people of India.”

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Equinox Labs introduces link between FSSA & pest control at India Pest

Equinox-Labs-New-Logo-1

India Pest 2013 – a three day event that took place in Hyderabad recently – was hosted by Stelson Quadros, secretary, Indian Pest Control Association (IPCA). Ashwin Bhadri, head, business relations, Equinox Laboratories, spoke about the introduction to the Food Safety and Standards Act (FSSA), 2006, and its co-relation to pest control and pest management. At the session, which was pest control experts, he spoke about the opportunities that lie within the pest control industry.

Speakers from Bayer and Intensive Pest Control Pvt Ltd made presentations. Jason Nash of Bayer moderated a panel discussion on bio-control in termite management. The panelists included Dr Shrinivas, Dr Ashish and Dr K Malla. Ganesh spoke about fumigation and its importance to the Indian economy. The highlight of the post-lunch session was a networking and stall visit, with closing comments by D D K Sharma, additional plant protection advisor, Plant Quarantine Division.

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Centre allowed to get junkfood guidelines examined by experts

NEW DELHI: The Delhi High Court today allowed the Centre’s plea that an expert committee would examine its recently-drafted guidelines on regulating sale of junk food and aerated drinks in and around schools premises.

“We have a seven-member expert committee. We would place the draft guidelines (on junk food) before the expert committee. Kindly give us four weeks time,” Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Rajeeve Mehra, appearing for the Centre, told a bench headed by Chief Justice N V Ramana.

The bench, also comprising Justice Pradeep Nandrajog, allowed the plea of the Centre and said that in the meantime, private parties like the Restaurants Association may file their representations to the expert committee on the issue.

During the hearing, senior advocate A M Singhvi, appearing for one of the parties, opposed the draft guidelines of Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) saying that private firm AC Nielsen QRG-MARG Pvt Ltd cannot be allowed to frame them.

“At best, it (AC Nielsen QRG-MARG Pvt Ltd) can collect the data, but it cannot frame guidelines,” he said. Similar plea was taken up by another senior lawyer Ashok Desai who said that the Food Safety and Standards Act has a specific provision and a private body cannot do this.

“The term junk food is a subjective term. A food item may be junk food for one and may not be for others,” Singhvi said.

“Such submissions would derail the process. The issue raised in the PIL goes beyond the Act (Food Safety and Standards Act),” the bench said. “We are looking at health issues. Obesity and even hypertension are becoming prevalent among children. We are aping the West,” the ASG said.

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Govt silent on FSSAI report on milk quality

The State government and the department responsible for maintaining food safety standards in Nagaland, it appears, have chosen to keep mum on a recent Food Safety and Standards of Authority of India (FSSAI) survey report on milk quality in Nagaland. According to a Press Information Bureau (PIB) report released on August 28 last, Nagaland stood fourth among states not conforming to Food Safety and Standards Regulations, 2011 with regard to milk produced and sold here. The information, the PIB release stated, was provided by Union Minister of Health & Family Welfare, Ghulam Nabi Azad at the Rajya Sabha. Local dailies had also carried the PIB report subsequently.
“In the National Survey conducted by the FSSAI to ascertain the quality of milk throughout the country, 68.4% samples were found to be non-conforming to Food Safety and Standards Regulations, 2011,” the PIB release stated. Nagaland stood fourth (at 86 percent) in the state-wise details of non-conforming samples in the descending order of percentage with respect to the total samples collected in different states and union territories. The report did not specify what kinds of adulterants were found in the samples which deemed the samples as not conforming to safety standards.

Food Safety and Standard Authority of India to study street food hygiene, quality

MUMBAI: The Food Safety and Standard Authority of India (FSSAI) has received the Uttar Pradesh government’s go-ahead to study quality of street food in Lucknow and Varanasi, known for tunda kebabs, jalebi and rabri.
The six-month study would cost a few crores and look at the number of street vendors, their personal hygiene besides the number of people consuming the food along with quality of water used.

UP food commissioner would conduct the study, which would also look into the nutritional value of the street food by measuring its fat and mineral content.

“Indians love street food. But it is important to ensure it is prepared and served in hygienic settings. We had asked the UP government for permission to carry out the study to look at the street food quality in 15 districts, but have received clearance to carry it out in Lucknow and Varanasi,” said FSSAI director Pradip Chakraborty.

The decision to standardize street food came after a successful pilot project carried out in Kolkata. The city’s safety standards in its street food inspired the Union health ministry to emulate the model across India.

A recent survey of the ministry in 16 cities found over 90% street food unsafe for consumption.

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Centre appoints 15 members under FSSA’s Sections 5, 7

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Exercising the powers conferred upon it by Sections 5 and 7 of the Food Safety and Standards Act (FSSA), 2006, the Department of Health and Family Welfare, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, appointed 15 members (other than ex-officio members) in the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) for three-year-terms that commence on the date they enter office or until the age of 62 years or until further orders, whichever is the earliest.

The duo appointed under Clause (b) of Sub-section (1) of Section 5 of the Act is Shreya Pandey of the All India Food Processors’ Association (AIFPA), New Delhi, and Meetu Kapur of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), New Delhi.

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Mr. Ashwin Bhadri outlines details on facing FDA audit while speaking at Goa expo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Equinox Labs was among the key participants at Goa Food and Hospitality Expo (GFHEX), a hospitality event, held in the state recently.

To mark the occasion, a networking dinner was held where Salim Veljee, director, department of food & drugs administration (FDA), participated and spoke on  “Food Safety & Standards: A Food Business Operator’s Perspective.”

Ashwin Bhadri, head, business relations, Equinox Labs, gave an introduction on “How to face a FSSAI /FDA Audit.” The session was attended by 150 hoteliers and representatives from companies catering to hotels, restaurants, cafes, bakeries, fast food joints, and specialty retail.

Gaurish Dhond, president, Goa Hotel and Restaurant Association, stated that the seminar and expo were fantastic and should be conducted every year, as they proved to be a value addition for the food and beverage community.

FSSAI moots regulations for infant milk, substitute food, fortified atta

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has proposed new regulations for infant milk and substitute food, fortified atta and ingredients for different foods – Food Products Standards and Additive – Amendment Regulations 2013.

For infant nutrition – the regulations defined substitutes for infant milk as milk protein between 10 and 16 per cent of by weight and total milk fat not less than 18 per cent. The draft also has regulation related to processed cereal-based complementary food for use in specific conditions. It provides that such food shall conspicuously be labelled as mono cereal-based complementary food – it can incorporate single cereal like rice or ragi and for use under medical guidance.

The regulations also defined the amount of nutrients for fortified atta and maida. Nutrients like calcium, iron, vitamin A, C, B1, B2, B6, B12, folic acid and niacin.

Some more ingredients were covered for use under the new regulations like oligofructose, not more than 10 per cent of the product. This ingredient could be used for dairy products like yogurt, spreads, frozen desserts, ready-to-eat dry breakfast, and milk product-based sweets.

Second ingredient that was included in draft regulations – phyto or plant stanol esters again for milk-based drinks, juices and so on with limit of 3 gm per day consumption. Third ingredient is Trehalose for carbonated beverages, biscuits, macaroni, noodles, pasta, sweets and candies with an amount 0.5 per cent to 75 per cent.

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EQUINOX LABS participated in Goa Food and Hospitality Expo (GFHEX) on 9th August ,2013

Goa’s first ever Biggest Hospitality Event hosted by professionals, the exhibition was for 4 days of innovation and inspiration. The event in Goa was conducted from 8th -11th August,

A Networking Dinner was held on  Friday ,9th Aug,2013 Hotel Mandovi, Panaji, Goa  at Taleigao Community Centre, Taleigao where Mr. Salim Veljee, Director , Department  of Food & Drugs Administration participated and narrated a small speech about  “Food Safety & Standards:  A Food Business Operator’s  Perspective” detailing about FSSAI and its importance, he mentioned FBO’S part of implementation related to FSSAI.

Mr.Ashwin Bhadri – Head Business Relations (EQUINOX LABS)   gave a brief introduction on  “How to face a FSSAI /FDA Audit”  the session was attended by 150  Hoteliers, a wide variety of exhibiting companies with leading edge  products catering to hotels, restaurants ,cafes, bakeries ,fast food joints, specialty retail and manufacturing sectors from established brands that  participated from across the country.

Mr. Gaurish Dhond President of Goa Hotel and Restaurant association commented stating that the seminar and the expo were fantastic and should be conducted every year, as it added a value on Food and Beverage (F&B) community.

Contact Information
Equinox Labs
Ph: (022) 276 44 111
Email: info@equinoxlab.com