“The government is focussed upon harnessing the strength of India’s ancient medicinal practices based on traditional health systems to get more and more export value,” said Union Minister of State for Science and Technology Y.S. Chowdary. He was speaking at the inaugural function of the ASSOCHAM National Symposium on Nutraceuticals, Herbals and Functional foods in New Delhi on Tuesday, July 5.
“Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been talking in a very focussed manner to harness our ancient values more and more to get more export value, this is not a new subject for India but requires us to stay focused, therefore, we should start getting this to the ground level,” Y S Chowdary said.
“Nutraceuticals has been part of India’s ancient values and strength but unfortunately this particular industry has not been getting enough support,” said Chowdary. “In our country, all these herbal and natural products need to become the first in line not for curative but for prevention purposes,” added the minister.
In his address at the ASSOCHAM conference, Kumar Anil, advisor (standards), Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) said that regulations for nutraceuticals industry have reached the final notification stage.
“We had realised the need for establishing standards earlier on and initiated the process four years ago, today I am happy to inform that these regulations have reached the final notification stage,” said Kumar.
“The regulations which have been framed under Section 22 of the Food Safety and Standards Act has been titled – Food Safety and Standards for food for health supplements, nutraceuticals, food for special dietary use, food for special medical purposes, functional food and normal food regulations 2016,” he said while addressing the gathering. He also said that these regulations have been framed to provide a level playing field to all stakeholders in the nutraceuticals industry.
“These regulations are very comprehensive and provide for manufacture and sale of food for special health supplements, nutraceuticals, special dietary use, special medical purposes, functional food and normal food,” he added.
The regulations provides general conditions for manufacture and sale of these foods besides providing chapter-wise details regarding essential composition, requirements related to claims, labelling, permitted use of additives and limits of contaminants, toxins and residues.
“These also provide for various schedules dealing with vitamins, minerals, recommended diet, daily allowance, list of ingredients of plants, botanical storages, pro-biotics, pre-biotics, besides it also has a comprehensive schedule of additives which is further divided into various sub-categories,” said Kumar.
He informed that for any new ingredients, plants or botanicals to be added to the list, these schedules offer any deletion if need be. “FSSAI intends to review these regulations on a regular basis as this exercise will help it in further evolving these regulations as per the stakeholders’ requirement.”
“These regulations offer for tremendous scope for evaluation and application for industry’s benefit,” further said Kumar.