You can begin commercial activities once you have secured a food license. In the case of foodstuffs, it is vital for the customer to meet packaging and labeling regulations. Consider the regulations of FSSAI.
What are packaging and labeling?
The art and science of embedding food goods are food packaging to protect them during distribution, sale, and storage. The design and evaluation of the packages are also carried out. The product design not only gives your items an aesthetic appeal but also helps them to distinguish themselves from others.
A label shows product information, generally printed on the packaging. The product and uses not only are described on a label, but also provide guidance and key (if applicable) precautionary actions. It tells people primarily about the features of a product.
Laws or Regulations Applicable
Because the FSSAI is the authority on all food-related matters in India, FSSAI registration and adherence to FSSAI guidelines are required. There are a number of other laws and regulations that food firms must adhere to when it comes to packing and labeling —
- The Act on Essential Commodities of 1955
- Order Concerning Meat Food Products of 1955
- Agricultural Produce Act of 1937 Edible Oil Packaging Order of 1998
- Export Act of 1963 Agmark regulations
- 1986 Bureau of Indian Standards
- 1976 Weight Measures Standards Act
- 1977 Standards of Weights and Measures Regulations
Sanctions will be enforced if food product packaging and labeling are not in conformity with the aforementioned requirements, depending on the severity of the crime. If a person violates the provisions of Section 39, i.e. if they pack, sell, or store food commodities that do not comply with the Packaged Commodities Rules, a fine of up to Rs. 5000 may be imposed. Furthermore, if the offender continues to perpetrate the aforementioned violation without showing any evidence of repentance, they may face up to 5 years in prison.
Essential information for Display
Certain labeling standards must be met before distribution may take place, according to the FSSAI Packaging and Labelling Regulations (2011). The following information is in the best interests of the consumer and safeguards their safety –
- The whole name of the food item must be written on the packed product in a legible typeface and format.
- A complete list of the major ingredients utilized in the final product’s production.
- The product’s net quantity or weight
- A code number or batch number that aids in the identification of a product during the distribution process.
- The product’s production date and its expiration date
- Nutritional data (calories, proteins, trans fats, sugar, and other dietary components) per 100 g of product
- Vegetarian or Non-vegetarian mark, where a green dot represents vegetarian items and a red dot represents non-vegetarian products.
- All food additives’ names (if any)
- In the case of imported food goods, the country in which the product was manufactured.
- Detailed directions for using the product, as well as any risks or contraindications (if any)
- Manufacturer’s name and complete address
Regulations for the Declaration of Use of Food Additives issued by the FSSAI
According to the FSS (Packaging & Labelling) Regulations, 2011, labels for food additives that are authorized to be used in the manufacture of food shall include the class titles as well as their specific names or internationally recognized number identification. The FSSAI has specified the following class titles for food additives: Acidity regulator, flavor enhancer, bulking agent, anti-foaming agent, anti-caking agent, foaming agent, propellant, preservative, thickener, stabilizer, sweetener, and other ingredients
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Colorants and flavoring agents in a product must be declared.
- Declaration for the inclusion of colorants
Any addition of a coloring agent must be specified on the label. As appropriate, one of the following sentences shall be mentioned in uppercase, directly below the list of ingredients:
- Declaratory statement for the addition of flavoring agents
The inclusion of any flavoring ingredient in the food product, like the addition of any coloring agent, must be declared on the label. Just below the list of ingredients, the following phrase in capital letters must be mentioned: