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FSSAI Issues New Norms to Stop Sale of Counterfeit Vegan Items

To control the selling of counterfeit vegan meals, the food regulator FSSAI issued laws that define vegan foods and identify several standards that must be met for the manufacturing, sale, and import of such food products.

Kritika Madhukar
FSSAI: Vegan food items should not have involved animal testing for any reason
FSSAI: Vegan food items should not have involved animal testing for any reason

The Food Safety and Standards (Vegan Foods) Regulations, 2022 have been issued by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI). The draught regulations were presented by the regulator in September 2021.

The FSSAI issued the revised regulations after taking into account public comments and recommendations about the proposed regulations.

"Vegan food means the food or food ingredient, including additives, flavorings, enzymes, and carriers, or processing aids that are not products of animal origin and in which ingredients, including additives, flavorings, enzymes, and carriers, or processing aids of animal origin, have not been used at any stage of production and processing," the FSSAI defined.

No one may produce, pack, sell, offer for sale, promote, distribute, or import any food as vegan food unless they meet the conditions outlined in the FSSAI rules. "Vegan food items should not have involved animal testing for any reason, including safety evaluation unless provided by any Regulatory Authority," the statement continued.

Every packaging material used for vegan goods should adhere to the packaging rules. Vegan food should be stored and displayed in a way that distinguishes it from non-vegan food, whether sold individually or as part of retail items. Following clearance, every box of vegan goods should include the FSSAI mark.

According to the FSSAI rules, the Food Business Operator (FBO) must guarantee that all phases of manufacturing, processing, and distribution are designed to take the necessary steps in accordance with good manufacturing practices to avoid the unintentional presence of non-vegan ingredients.

If the same manufacturing line is used for non-vegan goods or materials, thorough cleaning or equivalent steps in accordance with good manufacturing practices, then it should be implemented before the manufacture of vegan products begins.

Before vegan products are prepared, produced, or packaged, the FBO should take appropriate precautions in accordance with good manufacturing practices.

Traceability must be ensured up to the manufacturer level. The FBO should follow rules established by the food authority from time to time in order to maintain the vegan integrity of the foods, food components, or products thereof. No vegan food items should be imported unless accompanied by a certificate issued by a recognized authority of the exporting country in the format stipulated by the authority.

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