In India, the FSSAI sets standards for food, so that there is no chaos in the minds of consumers, traders, manufacturers, and investors. This article explains the FSSAI standard regulations with which you should comply to avoid being penalised by the government.
Government agencies all around the globe have stringent policies in place for food labelling and food packaging designs. In India, the FSSAI (Food Safety and Standards Authority of India) is the authority that mandates the food labelling norms. Whenever there is a launch of a new food product or the packaging gets renewed, the producer needs to adhere to FSSAI guidelines on the labelling of food products.
With so many FSSAI label rules in place, there is every chance for errors creeping in. Any inadvertent mistake in complying with FSSAI food labelling rules may lead to fines, penalties, product recalls, or delays in a scheduled product launch. However, with proper knowledge of the FSSAI labelling rules, you can steer your product clear of all these situations.
What Are the FSSAI Food Labelling Regulations?
The FSSAI guidelines on the labelling of food products are a comprehensive set of rules that every food manufacturer and brand must follow. These rules mandate the labelling of every packaged food item and provide certain crucial information related to the product and the manufacturer. These are as follows:
1. Name of the Food
A label should clearly display the product’s name and the font prescribed in the food labelling FSSAI rules.
2. The List of Ingredients
The label must mention the elements used in making the final food product. The manufacturer should mention all the ingredients of the product fairly and should not keep the end customers in the dark about any ingredients used.
3. Nutritional Information
FSSAI labelling rules mandate the mention of the details related to the calories of the food product on the label. It should mention calories received from trans fat, saturated fat, sodium, cholesterol dietary fibre, carbohydrates, protein, sugar, iron, calcium, vitamin A, and vitamin C contained in the product.
4. Declaration Regarding Non-vegetarian or Vegetarian
Some parts of India consider non-vegetarian food unholy and against the relevant religious practices. Therefore, FSSAI label rules dictate to every manufacturer to mention on the label whether the food product has any non-vegetarian ingredients in it. The label must have a small dot at the corner to represent if the product is vegetarian or non-vegetarian. A red-coloured dot represents non-vegetarian food and a green-coloured dot represents vegetarian food.
5. Declaration Regarding Food Additives Used
Additives are substances added to a food product to enhance its appearance and/or taste and to preserve its flavour. The producer must make a declaration on the label regarding the additives used in the product.
6. Name and Complete Address of the Manufacturer
At a prominent place on the label, there should be a clear mention of the manufacturer’s name, complete address, and place of manufacturing.
7. Customer Care Details
The contact details of the customer support centre must be on the label
The net quantity or packaged weight of the food product must find a prominent mention on the label
9. Retail Sale Price
The maximum retail price at which the product is on sale should be there.
10. FSSAI Logo and License Number
At a prominent place on the label, there must be a mention of the logo and the food licence online number, as per the FSSAI labelling rules
11. Batch/Code/Lot Number
These numbers provide authenticity about the manufacturer of the product and hence there should be a mention of it on the label.
12. Manufacturing Date and the Best Before/Use-by Date
This is an important piece of information for consumers. It will inform them of the date before which the product has to be consumed. Any consumption after the expiry date may cause harm to the consumer.
13. User Instructions
The FSSAI labelling rules mandate the producer must mention the instructions to use the product on its label.
14. Country of Origin (For Imported Food)
According to the FSSAI label rules, on the labels of all imported foods, there must be a mention of the nationality of the food. This will inform the consumers where the product was grown, manufactured, or processed.
15. FSSAI License Number
The label of the product must display the FSSAI logo and license number, in contrast, the colour of the packaging background for a clear view.
We have seen many companies often missing out on important aspects related to FSSAI food labelling regulations and languishing in the ‘disapproval’ section. Therefore, it is important for you to give due importance to the FSSAI guidelines on the labelling of food products. Ensure you double-check the labelling for compliance with the FSSAI food labelling before sending it off for the final printing. You should connect to Vakilsearch to get your product registered with the FSSAI and ensure your product complies with the FSSAI standards.