FSSAI: Food Labelling and Display – Chapter-3

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FSSAI Food Safety and Standards Authority of India
FSSAI
Dipika Chauhan

Last Updated on April 17, 2024 by Dipika Chauhan

Food Labelling

To be continued……. FSSAI: Food Labelling and Display – Chapter-2

Decoding Labels: Unveiling the Ingredients List on Food Packaging

Food Label FSSAI Food Safety and Standards Authority of India
Food Label FSSAI

In the intricate dance of Flavors and compositions within packaged foods, the ingredients list takes centre stage, revealing the secrets of a product’s formulation.

The regulations governing the disclosure of these ingredients, outlined under the Food Safety and Standards Act, are meticulous and pivotal for consumer awareness with respect to food labelling.

Let’s delve into the intricacies of presenting the list of ingredients on food labels.

1. The Ingredients Odyssey: A Clear Declaration

(a) Appropriate Title: Ingredients/List of Ingredients

The ingredients list embarks with a clear title, such as “Ingredients/List of Ingredients.”

This establishes a standardized beginning, ensuring consumers can easily identify where to find crucial information about the composition of the product.

(b) Descending Order of Composition

The arrangement of ingredients is not arbitrary; it follows a logical sequence.

Ingredients are listed in descending order of their composition by weight or volume during the product’s manufacture.

This provides consumers with insights into the relative proportions of each component.

(c) Food Additives and Technological Functions

Ingredients, including food additives, play specific roles in the technological function of the product.

If a food additive carries over into the final product, it must be included in the list of ingredients, emphasizing transparency in formulation.

(d) Specific Names for Ingredients

Generic terms are left at the doorstep; each ingredient must be identified by its specific name.

This specificity avoids ambiguity and ensures that consumers understand precisely what goes into their chosen product.

(e) Compound Ingredients Revelation

For compound ingredients — those resulting from the fusion of two or more ingredients — transparency is paramount.

They are declared either as a compound with an accompanying list of components in brackets or by individually declaring all the ingredients as if they were standalone components.

Exceptions exist for compound ingredients constituting less than 5% of the food.

(f) Declaration of Added Water

Water’s role in a product, whether added separately or inherent in other ingredients like brine or syrup, is clearly outlined.

However, in certain instances where water or volatile ingredients evaporate during manufacturing, no declaration is required.

(f) Reconstituted Foods and Ingredient Disclosure

In the realm of dehydrated or condensed foods designed for reconstitution, the label must not only reveal the ingredients in their dehydrated or condensed state but also provide instructions for preparation, ensuring accurate information for consumers.

(g) Quantitative Ingredient Disclosure

When certain ingredients hold significance, either highlighted on the label or essential for characterizing the food, their ingoing percentage at the time of manufacture must be disclosed.

This prevents potential consumer deception and ensures that vital components are transparently represented.

2. Compliance as a Cornerstone

Adherence to these regulations is not merely a legal obligation but a commitment to consumer trust.

Manufacturers play a vital role in ensuring that the ingredients list is not just a collection of words but a transparent window into the essence of their products.

To be continued……. FSSAI: Food Labelling and Display – Chapter-4

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