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FSSAI introduces new logo for Vegan Food
The concept of veganism or vegan food is gaining a lot of popularity in India, especially in the past few years. India has seen rapid growth in the demand for vegan foods or products. As per the concept of veganism, people prohibit themselves from consuming by-products obtained from animals, such as milk, eggs, meat, etc. People can follow veganism due to different reasons. Some follow due to their religious beliefs, while others follow due to health issues. Keeping in mind people’s beliefs, FSSAI had made strict regulations to regulate the sale of vegan food in the Indian market. It is the first time that the government of India has recognized vegan food products and mentioned the regulatory compliance for their sale, distribution, import, manufacturing, and packing.
- India’s Food Safety and Standards Authority is an autonomous body established under the FSS Act,2006. The main objective of FSSAI is to regulate the food business and prevent food from adulteration.
- FSSAI now has drafted many regulations such as the Food Adulteration Act 1954 and Vegetable and Oil control 1947. So now, FSSAI is the sole regulatory body in India that regulates food, oil, and milk products to ensure that they are safe to use, adulterant free, and have good quality.
- The regulator bought the draft regulations for FSS (Vegan Foods) regulations 2022 in September 2021, specifying what the definition of vegan food is and what regulatory compliance food business owners have to follow:
Definition – Per the FSS (Vegan Food) Regulations,2022, vegan food is food or ingredients, including additives, flavoring, enzymes, or processing aids that are not animal-origin products. At any stage of manufacturing or processing, animal products are not used. For the food product to be vegan, it shall not involve animal testing for safety evaluation unless provided by any regulator on special request.
FSS (Vegan Food) Regulations,2022:
a) General requirements:
- No person shall manufacture, pack, sell, distribute or import any vegan food unless they comply with the regulations.
- To pack vegan food, business owners shall follow packing regulations.
- It is the responsibility of the food business operator to ensure that no animal product is being used in the production, processing, or distribution and to follow good manufacturing practices so that consumers can avoid non-vegan substances completely.
- Even if the same production line is shared with non-vegan food, the food business owner should follow thorough cleaning and conform to good manufacturing practices before vegan production starts. It shall apply to all the equipment, surfaces, and utensils used.
- Food Business owners shall ensure that they follow good manufacturing practices to prepare, produce or pack vegan foods.
- The vegan food shall be traceable to the manufacturer and the food business operator.
- No one can import vegan food without a certificate issued by the authorities of the exporting countries.
- Food business owners must submit an application and necessary details related to the plant/machines used/manufacturing site to the authority. The food safety officer shall inspect and verify the premises.
- The final product shall undergo testing with molecular/chemical or analytical tools to make sure that no animal-origin products are used.
- The licensing authority, at least once a year, shall carry out the surveillance of the registration.
b) Labeling and Display requirements for vegan food:
- The vegan food seller shall store and display the food in such a manner that consumers can easily differentiate it from non-veg food.
- The Food business owner shall use a vegan logo as specified below on the vegan package so that consumers can differentiate vegan food from veg and non-veg food.
c) About the Logo:
Here the “V” is at the centre of a green box, and the leaf at the top represents the food extracted from the plants below. The word “Vegan” helps the consumer to identify vegan food and not to be confused with vegetarian food.
Conclusion: With the advancement of technology, people have become more aware of their needs and requirements. Thus, people have started taking their food habits more seriously and are now more aware of the type of food they want. That’s why FSSAI is working tirelessly to bring more strict regulations to regulate the sale, distribution, import, and manufacturing of food items in India. Not only this, FSSAI is making regulations to regulate the packaging and processing of food so that consumers know what they are consuming.
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