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FSSAI building database on pathogens

LiveMint logoLiveMint 28-06-2017 Neetu Chandra Sharma

New Delhi: India’s food regulator Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) is building a database on the prevalence and behavior of pathogens and micro organisms that cause spoilage in foods.

The move is aimed at building credibility and acceptability of Indian food products in global markets. It will also protect the interests of customers, global and local.

FSSAI says that India is becoming a significant player in the global food market and needs to institutionalize processes related to food safety.

FSSAI officials said that scientific approach would not only help in predicting the shelf life of products, but also in developing safer food formulations. The work is being done under an agreement FSSAI signed with CII-HUL Initiative on Food Safety Sciences, a partnership between industry lobby group Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and consumer packaged goods company Hindustan Unilever (HUL) to promote science based food safety.

“Drawing a linkage between agriculture and safe food processing, it is very important to understand and learn the best international practices. Such knowledge building efforts would not only ensure safer food for domestic consumption, but also boost exports,” said Ashish Bahuguna, chairperson, FSSAI.

Meanwhile, the ministry of food processing industries is in the process setting up and upgrading food testing laboratories with the objective of having a network of the same around the country.

“We are mapping the laboratories and we are particularly looking at those areas which lack the infrastructure. When agriculture is gradually becoming technology based, we have to make food testing and storage also science based,” said Harsimrat Kaur Badal, minister of food processing industries.

FSSAI is also harmonizing its food safety standards with the internationally accepted Codex Standards.

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