The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India, or FSSAI, has framed proposals to restrict the use of terms such as “fresh”, “natural”, “traditional” and “original” in advertisements for food products, IANS reported on Thursday.
“We are coming out with this draft notification to stop misleading ads and claims,” FSSAI Chief Executive Officer Pawan Agarwal told the Hindustan Times. “It had been in the pipeline for some time to ensure that people are not fooled in the name of natural and fresh food.”
In its draft proposal, the FSSAI said such terms can only be used for products that have not been processed in any manner, except washed, peeled, trimmed, chilled or put through processing that is required to keep it safe for consumption.
A food product that contains additives or is subjected to packaging, storing or any other supply chain processes that control freshness cannot be termed “freshly stored” or “freshly packed”, IANS quoted from the proposal.
The use of the word “natural” will only be allowed the product is derived from a plant, animal, microorganism or mineral, the draft proposal said, also suggesting that they should be packaged without chemicals and preservatives. It said scientific methods will be used to validate the nutritional attributes of an item claimed in advertisements of the product.