Food Safety and Standards Authority of India hasn't received a single compliant in 11 years

Updated: Dec 12, 2017, 16:26 IST | Rupsa Chakraborty | Mumbai

While food regulatory body reimburses testing fees to consumers if food is found adulterated, it hasn’t received a single complaint in 11 years

Did you know that as per the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSCI) Act, if food purchased by a person is established as adulterated, the cost of getting it tested is reimbursed? The answer is likely to be a resounding "no", because 11 years since the Act's inception, the regulatory body has not received a single case under section 40 that governs this complaint segment.

If the food product is deemed in contravention of the provisions of the FSSCI Act, the product seller stands to lose his/her licence. Pic/afp
If the food product is deemed in contravention of the provisions of the FSSCI Act, the product seller stands to lose his/her licence. Pic/ AFP

According to FSSCI officials, most consumers refrain from getting food products tested for adulteration fearing high costs of the process. "Any individual can get suspicious food products tested at FSSCI laboratories, but since it's a time-consuming procedure, most people shy away from doing so. The process costs R2,000 to R5,000, depending on the food product. But, the regulatory body has a provision under which the regulatory body will gladly reimburse the testing fees to the consumer," an official said.

Section 40 of the FSSCI Act states, "If the report of the food analyst shows that the article of food is not in compliance with the Act or the rules or regulations made there under, the purchaser shall be entitled to get refund of the fees paid by him under this section." However, not a single person has ever asked for testing under the section in the past 11 years. Dr Pallavi Darade, state Food and Drug Administration (FDA) commissioner, said, "The FDA does thousands of food analysis, every month. But, none of them are done because some consumer reported an adulterated food product."

If the food product is deemed in contravention of the provisions of the FSSCI Act, the product seller stands to lose his/her licence or be fined.

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