The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has issued a framework for all alcoholic beverages in India. The board has also approved the list of additives which can be used in the manufacturing process of of alcoholic drinks such as beer and whiskey. The standards released by FSSAI marks a first for all alcoholic beverages in the country.
Safety Standards for Alcohol
Speaking to PTI regarding the issue of safety standards of alcoholic beverages, FSSAI Chief Executive, Pawan Agarwal, said, “The Food Safety Standards Authority of India has finalized a list of food additives and standards with respect to alcoholic beverages.” He noted that the standards issued by FSSAI is aligned with the existing standards from the International Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV). The new regulations has been sent to the Union Health Ministry and will be set to be operational upon further confirmation.
Regulating Food and Beverage in India
The standards for alcoholic beverages issues by FSSAI is a first for the regulator in regards to alcoholic beverages in India. “With this, FSSAI has crossed a major landmark in setting of standards for almost all food categories available in the country,” added Agarwal. Last month, the FSSAI issued regulations for all ready-t0-cook products, mainly targeting the instant noodles category in the country. The regulations proposed would set the permissible limit of Monosodium Glutamate (MSG) and Ash content in all instant noodles product, as well as to specify standards for the taste maker present in these products.
The FSSAI has been proactive in controlling the food standards and hygiene in the country. The regulator recently notified all canteens in the central government department to obtain licenses and adhere to the strict regulations to maintain and monitor safety and hygiene during food services. FSSAI has also moved to ban potassium bromate from the list of food additives based on a study by Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) which noted that the ingredient, which is present in all packaged bread items in the country, could potentially cause cancer.