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India Amends the Food Safety and Standards (Contaminants, Toxins and Residues) Regulations Regarding Crop Contaminants

Photo: Contaminants on cereal should be limited
Photo: Contaminants on cereal should be limited

On November 20, 2015, the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) published a draft of the Food Safety Standards (Contaminants, Toxins and Residues) (Amendment) Regulation 2015, regarding crop contaminants which are susceptible to contain Aflatoxin, Ochratoxin A, Patulin and Deoxynivalenol.

Codex Alimentarius defines “Crop contaminants” as any substances that are not intentionally added to food, but which get added to articles of food in the process of their production (including operations carried out in crop husbandry, animal husbandry and veterinary medicine), manufacture, processing, preparation, treatment, packing, packaging transport, or holding of articles of such food as a result of environmental contamination.

Mycotoxins are toxic metabolites produced by molds. They have the potential to cause both acute and chronic health effects via ingestion, skin contact and inhalation. They are of much concern for both food commodities and animal feed, particularly in countries with tropical condition that have humidity and temperatures sufficient for the growth of molds.

The Food Safety and Standards (Contaminants, Toxins and Residues) Regulation 2011, F.No.2-15015/30/2010 [1] was established on August 1, 2011. The regulation sets limits for various metal contaminants and crop contaminants, as well as naturally occurring toxic substance and residues, such as insecticide groups in food commodities. This update to the regulation for 2015 [2] amends the 2011 food safety regulation, in regulation 2.2 relating to “Crop Contaminants and naturally occurring toxic substances”, sub-regulation 2.2.1, clause 1, as per the table below.

Table: Crop contaminants limit
Table: Crop contaminants limit

What do the changes mean?

The Food Safety and Standards (Contaminants, Toxins and Residues) (Amendment) Regulation 2015 came into force on November 12, 2015, the date it was published in the Gazette of India. Food business operators must ensure that their food products meet the new standards. Compliance can be verified through sampling and testing. If in doubt, seek professional advice.

SGS is committed to keeping you informed of regulation news and developments. Leveraging our global network of laboratories and food experts, SGS provides a comprehensive range of food safety and quality solutions including analytical tests, audits, certifications, inspections, and technical support. We continually invest in our testing, capability, and state-of-the art technology to help you reduce risk, and to improve food safety and quality. For more information, please visit our website: http://www.sgs.com/en/Agriculture-Food/Food.aspx

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