FSSAI welcomes innovation with regulation for non-specified food


In order to draw the line on quality of non-specified food and food ingredients, Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has notified final regulations on approval of non-specified food and food ingredients. 

In this regard, FSSAI plans to put up another notice whereby FBOs (food business operators) can provide additional info in the applications already submitted to the apex food regulator.

Under these regulations, “non-specified food” means any food other than proprietary food or food ingredients, including additives, processing aids and enzymes for which standards have not been specified in any regulation made under the Act.

And the food business operator shall submit to the food authority, a certificate of analysis in respect of the chemical, physical, microbiological and nutritional parameters of the food manufactured or imported.

Providing details on the move, Pawan Agarwal, CEO, FSSAI, states that FBOSs can now start applying for approval of non-specified food items.

He added, “We will ascertain their application and subsequently give approval. We will further publish a notice allowing the FBOs to add, any additional information if they want, to the older applications as well.” However, experts feel that this definition can have an impact on the food industry.

Providing an insight into how the industry perceives the move, Ashwin Bhadri, CEO, Equinox Labs (an NABL-accredited and FSSAI-notified lab), fears, “The definition of non-specified food and ingredients can be a hurdle to many food businesses in two ways – One, FBO had no option but to resort to another method or ingredient. This would decrease the quality (texture, taste) and authenticity of the product is lost.”

He expresses concerns, “Second, charges of non-compliance would be filed if FBO uses any such method or product unintentionally, purely to sustain authenticity of the product.”

Providing information on difference between proprietary foods and novel foods, Bhadri explains, “There is a fine line of difference between proprietary foods and novel foods. Proprietary food means those other than novel foods that have not been mentioned or standardised under any regulation made by the Act.”

He adds, “However, they do have a significant amount of history with respect to their usage in food products. Novel foods or processing aid differ in this particular factor; they do not have a specific history with respect to their consumption or its use in the manufacture of any food product.”

This difference adds particular pressure on the latter; with no past records, use of novel products might create confusion and pose danger to health of people, should they cause any reaction.

Read Previous

President releases device for checking milk adulteration

Read Next

Vitafoods Asia- Positive First Run in Singapore

Leave a Reply