FSSAI bans use of newspapers for packing food

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has banned use of newspapers for wrapping and packing of food items.

In this regard, FSSAI has issued an advisory all states and Union territories and asked commissioners of food safety to restrict the use of newspapers for packing, serving and storing of food items.

This is first time in recent years FSSAI has issued new rule related to packaging of food items. So far, it had focused on setting standards for packaged food.

Why this ban has been imposed?
  • In India, use of newspapers for wrapping and packing of food items is a common practice followed by small corner shops and street vendors.
  • However, it can cause serious health concerns due contaminate food items by newspaper ink.
  • Printing ink used for printing newspapers may contain bioactive materials, harmful pigments, colours, additives, binders, preservatives, chemical contaminants and even pathogenic microorganisms that may pose potential risk to human health.
  • Even newspaper or cardboard boxes made of recycled paper may be contaminated with mineral oils, metallic contaminants and harmful chemicals like phthalates which can cause digestive problems and also lead to severe toxicity.
  • Older people, teenagers, children and people with compromised vital organs and immune systems are at a greater risk of acquiring cancer-related health complications after they are exposed to food items packed in such materials

FSSAI: It is a nodal statutory agency responsible for protecting and promoting public health in India through the regulation and supervision of food safety. It was established under the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006. It functions under aegis of Union Ministry of Health & Family Welfare.

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Categories: India Current Affairs 2017

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