FSSAI has directed all the state food authorities to reject all the imported food consignments which claimed to be organic but do not comply with the food safety regulations.
As per FSSAI, all the food products imported to India, which claimed to be organic are supposed to comply with the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006, in addition to the provisions of the Food Safety and Standards (Organic Foods) Regulations, 2017.
FSSAI, in its order, stated, “In case the imported food consignments do not comply with the organic regulations and above instructions, the same will be rejected and the importer or clearinghouse agent (CHA) will have to follow the due procedure of review application as in the Food Safety and Standards (Import) Regulations.”
The order, meanwhile, spoke about the relaxation for the consignments which were exported to India before July.
“However, the import consignments claimed as organic food items, which were exported before July 2018, but have reached on or after July 2018, may be given relaxation for compliance to the Food Safety and Standards (Organic Foods) Regulations, 2017,” the order said.
Pankaj Agarwal, managing director, Just Organik, said, “The recent notification by FSSAI on the imported organic products is a good initiative, as the demand for organic products is increasing in India and there are many products that are not grown in India. This is only possible now because of the Jaivik India norms coming into play for the first time from July 1, 2018. Before this, anyone could sell anything claiming it to be organic. So this is a more consumer-centric approach.”
After meeting several stakeholders, FSSAI, in June 2018, had allowed the use of non-detachable stickers with respect to the apex regulator’s organic logo up to September 30, 2018.