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New Food Packaging Regulations Which You Must Be Aware Of

Neelansh Gupta

| Updated: Jan 10, 2019 | Category: FSSAI Food License

New Food Packing Regulations

Generally when you eat the street food and order a plate of samosa or pakoda, and the vendor hands it over to you in a “plate” made with old newspapers.  With the chutney accompanied by it is pack in poor quality plastic and us guys rarely pay attention to the packaging of street food and ignore the packaging of such food. However, thanks to the latest Food packaging regulations by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India[1] (FSSAI) that such kind of unhealthy packaging might just be the thing of the past. In a press release which was issued last week, the FSSAI has issued certain guidelines and new packaging norms for such informal kind of business like the food which is served by the street vendors to stop using old newspapers or recycled plastics. In this article, we will discuss such norms and how they would raise the bar of the food quality in India.

What is the Objective of Introducing the New Guidelines for Food Packaging?

The main and primary objective of food packaging is to protect the food contents from microbiological, chemical, physical and atmospheric contamination. Also to preserve the food and thereby protect consumer’s health. The regulations clearly specify the suggestive list of packaging materials for different food product categories. According to these regulations, the packaging materials used for packing or storing the food products shall conform to the Indian Standards provided in the schedules.

What is the Importance of Food Packaging?

  • The packaging of food helps to protect the food contents from microbiological, chemical, physical and atmospheric contamination which ultimately protects consumer’s health.
  • Food packaging plays a vital role in keeping the food quality safe and intact during its handling and transportation process.
  • It protects foods against physical, chemical and environmental factors that could possibly contaminate food when the food is not packed properly.
  • Good packaging also ensures that there is no change in the properties. It remains intact and the composition of food is perfect when packed.
  • Food packaging when done properly and correctly extends the shelf-life of food; thereby enhance the security of food.

Key Highlights of the Amendments

  • On January 3, 2019, FSSAI which is the apex food regulating authority in India has notified new food packaging regulations.
  • It has replaced all the old packaging requirements as were prescribed in Food Safety and Standards (Packaging and Labeling) Regulations, 2011.
  • The new packaging norms would be effective from July 1, 2019, which bars the use of recycled plastics and newspapers to wrap food articles.
  • The regulations now prohibit packaging material made of recycled plastics which includes carrying bags for packaging, storing, carrying or dispensing articles of food.
  • It specifies the suggestive list of packaging materials which needs to be followed and used for different food product categories.
  • The norms completely prohibit the use of newspaper and such other materials for packing or wrapping of food. Since such articles contain the inks and dyes may lead to the formation of Cancer disease. The norms also strictly prohibit the use of newspaper and such other materials for packing or wrapping of food articles.
  • The regulations state to follow respective Indian standards for packing of food.

However, there would be many difficulties in implementing these regulations.  Particularly as far as they relate to the loose packaging materials and to the unorganized sector.

What Alternatives can Poor Food Vendors have after such an Amendment?

Since it is quite true that the inks and dyes as are in printing newspapers may sometimes be carcinogenic. The regular use of these to serve food especially oily food that soaks in the ink might. It can prove very harmful to consumers.

  • Plates which are made from inexpensive recycled paper or eco-friendly material could be the best and perfect solution.
  • Many companies like CHUK makes affordable, finest sugarcane bagasse plates which are eco-friendly made from agricultural residue. They can be the best alternative.

Let’s Sum up

To raise the bar for food safety in the country, such regulations were necessary. FSSAI now prohibits packaging material made of recycled plastics. It includes carrying bags for packaging, storing, carrying or dispensing articles of food. For more information, you can contact the team of experts at Enterslice.

Read our article:Licenses Required for Banquet Hall Serving Food

Neelansh Gupta

Mr. Neelansh Gupta is a Legal Counsel having extensive in-depth knowledge of various laws. He has completed his graduation in law and has experience in IPR, Taxation and Corporate laws.

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