India: Trans Fats Label Declaration proposed by FSSAI


The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has proposed draft regulations to introduce a new clause under nutritional information labeling of the current regulation.

Trans - Fats and Saturated Fats

According to the proposal, food in which fats, oils and fat emulsions are used as ingredients will now need to carry declaration of the content of trans-fats and saturated fats on their labels. 

This will be mandatory for every package of edible oils, inter-esterified vegetable fat, hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated oils, edible fats, margarine, fat spreads (mixed fat spread, vegetable fat spread) and for packages of food in which fats, oils and fat emulsions are used as ingredients.

What is currently required?

Current labeling requirements for pre-packaged foods require mandatory declaration only when a claim is made regarding the amount or type of fatty acids and/or cholesterol. In this case, the amount of saturated / monosaturated / polysaturated fatty acids (in grams), the amount of trans-fats (in milligrams) and the amount of cholesterol (in milligrams) need to be declared.

Furthermore, foods in which hydrogenated vegetable fat or bakery shortening is used, presently need to have labels declaring: ‘Hydrogenated vegetable fats’ or ‘Bakery shortening used contains trans-fats’.

In brief

In other words, the proposed changes in the draft regulation are specifying that, instead of simply declaring that certain items contain trans-fat or associating the declaration of trans-fats with a claim, it will be mandatory for a much wider range of foods to have declaration of the content of trans-fats present in them.

Classification changes

Another aspect to be noted with this draft regulation is that it is proposing changes in the table of classes and class titles under clause-2. Below is a comparison between the current and the draft regulation:

Current regulation

Classes

Class titles

Edible vegetable oils/ Edible vegetable fats

Edible vegetable oil/ Edible vegetable fat or both hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oil

Draft regulation

Classes

Class titles

Edible vegetable oil/ Edible vegetable fat or both hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oil

Give name of source of the edible oil such as mustard oil, groundnut oil etc.

Edible vegetable fat

Give type of vegetable fat (interesterified vegetable fat, hydrogenated oils, partially hydrogenated oils, edible vegetable fats, margarine and fat spreads such as mixed fat spreads, vegetable fat spreads

Need more information of how these regulations, once adopted, will affect your business? You can start using our RegData database for all the up-to-date information.