Maggi Controversy: What FSSAI said on Nestle?

After obtaining adverse results from sample testing of Maggi Masala packets of Nestle India in U.P., the Food Safety & Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) had advised Commissioners of Food Safety in various States to draw samples and get the same tested from authorized laboratories.

Analysis of the reports showed that 3 violations have been committed by the food maker in India, such as presence of lead in excess of the permissible level of 2.5 ppm, misleading label of “No added MSG”, and release of “Maggi Oats Masala Noodles with Tastemaker” without risk assessment and grant of product approval.

The Company representatives were asked to appear for a hearing on June 4 by the Chairman of FSSAI to seek their response in the matter and the Company contended that testing protocols had not been complied with; that the “No added MSG” label was fixed on account of lack of clarity and in accordance with industry practices; and that the Oat Noodles had been launched at a time when the advisory dated 11.5.2013 (on the subject of product approvals) had been stayed by the Court.

The above response was considered by FSSAI and not found to be satisfactory leading to confirmation of violations of the law in its Order dated 5.6.2015, following which the FSSAI has directed the Company to withdraw and recall all the 9 approved variants of Maggi Instant Noodle from the market; and “stop further production, processing, import, distribution and sale thereof.”

Besides, the company was asked to comply with the labeling regulations and remove the label of “No added MSG”, withdraw and recall the food product “Maggi Oats Masala Noodles with Tastemaker” and any other product for which risk assessment has not been undertaken and product approval granted and to take appropriate action to re-ascertain the safety of its products in compliance of the obligation contained in Section 26 of the Food Safety Standards Act, 2006.

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